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How to do robotics right

Credit: Kidsday illustration / Caitlin Hanratty

Credit: Kidsday illustration / Caitlin Hanratty

If you are thinking about getting into the field of robotics, do not simply buy a robot toy and play with it.

It is true that some companies make robots that do not require the user to build or program them. These products do not trigger creative thinking; They are toys. Other companies have robotic kits that let you design, build and program your robot. This is the way to do robotics right. It is the way to become creative in designing, building and programing robots and have genuine fun.

The most exciting thing about robotics is robotics competitions. They are a serious business, with some competitions being between schools, states or even countries. The participants learn lifelong skills — teamwork, communication and leadership. The opposing teams may have a goal to remotely drive the robot to flip caps, shoot balls, to toggle a flag or to just have a race and let the fastest robot win. Other types of tasks may require the participants to write on the spot a program that would direct the robot to successfully travel through an obstacle course. 

Due to the increasing interest in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM), a number of schools, including Kellenberg, offer after-school clubs.

Clara Villani’s newspaper club, Brother Joseph C. Fox Latin School, Kellenberg, Uniondale

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