Brecksville-Broadview Heights City School District News Article

Innovation and Design Class Promotes Collaborative Learning with Robotics

Innovation and Design Class Promotes Collaborative Learning with Robotics 2

Under the guidance of STEM and Science Teacher Mrs. Roderick, eighth-grade students in the Innovation and Design Class at Brecksville-Broadview Heights Middle School are developing valuable STEM and other future-ready skills through collaborative learning experiences featuring robotics. Over the course of the semester, students have devoted themselves to studying and working with the VEX V5 Clawbot. This includes being able to identify and understand the main function and purpose of key components such as motors, cables, central computer, and controller. 

Students also develop valuable problem-solving, critical thinking, communication, and collaboration skills while working as a team with their robot. These skills are practiced daily in a variety of common scenarios. From motor malfunctions to connection failures, students brainstorm ideas and collectively work together to observe the robot’s behavior and identify the root cause of both hardware and software-related issues. After building a strong understanding of the robot’s design and functions, students move on to using the engineering design process with a partner to design, build, and test modifications to their robot!

The Innovation and Design Class also provides students the opportunity to apply their skills and understanding in a fun, competitive atmosphere through ongoing double-elimination tournaments. Students control their robots to complete simple challenges such as picking up a small block and placing it on top of another robot or grabbing a ball and putting it inside of a cube. 

Through these dynamic and inquiry-based learning experiences, students are obtaining important skills that will serve as a solid foundation for continued learning and achievement at the high school level and beyond.

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