Students showcase robotics used in the classroom

Lincoln Bennett, 7, of Edinburg, a second grader at W.W. Robinson Elementary, uses an iPad to control this robot that pushed cotton balls along the carpet during the Robotics and Coding Open House on Thursday at the Shenandoah County Administration Building in Woodstock. Rich Cooley/Daily

WOODSTOCK – The Shenandoah County Government Center’s Board Room was taken over Thursday afternoon by students showcasing robots they had created in their schools.

Six stations were set up across the room to demonstrate and explain how they use robotics in the classroom for educational purposes, all while having a bit of fun at coding.

Rebekah Sullivan, a 16-year-old junior at Strasburg High School, demonstrated how to use a remote-controlled Boe-Bot she created in her physics class.

She said that the two other Boe-Bots on display were wireless and programmed by a computer to follow certain commands, such as avoiding obstacles and reacting to light reflecting off obstacles.

Rebekah said had no prior experience with robotics or coding.

Carter Kassis, 8, of Woodstock, stacks a group of cubelets during the fair Thursday. The cubelets are magnetic blocks that snap together to form a robot. Rich Cooley/Daily

“I didn’t know any parts of a computer before physics this year,” she said.

She said the class provided “hands-on” experiences that have shaped her future and that she plans to continue to learn about these skills. She said she has considered a career in the technology field, particularly in coding as the job market in this field is booming.

Lincoln Bennett, 7, of Edinburg, and a second grader at W.W. Robinson Elementary School, played with a blue and orange Dash robot that responds to voice and navigates around objects. It also dances.

Lincoln used the robot to move cotton balls into a designated taped square on the floor. He said he really enjoyed playing with this toy, and electronic toys similar to this robot and liked the speed as he maneuvered the robot in fast circles.

“Gotta go fast,” he said.

Sherri Jarrett, a gifted and talented resource specialist at Peter Muhlenberg Middle School and Central High School, showcased cubelets, which are magnetic blocks that the students can stack and use to execute various commands.

She added that it’s fun to “let the kids have them and stand back” and see what they can do with the colored blocks.

Carter Kassis, 8, of Woodstock, eagerly stacked the blocks into a tower.

Contact staff writer Kaley Toy at 540-465-5137 ext. 176, or ktoy@nvdaily.com