JPL hosted the 3rd Annual Southern California NASA Explorer Schools Robotics Competition as a way to teach students about robotic exploration.

Transcript:

Robot Madness
Tease:
Students used Lego robots to compete on a Mars-like obstacle course during an annual robotics competition at JPL.
Longer: JPL hosted the 3rd Annual Southern California NASA Explorer Schools Robotics Competition as a way to teach students about robotic exploration.
Keywords: Legos, robot, robotics, NASA, JPL, Mars, Jet Propulsion Laboratory
Video transcript:
Southern California NASA Explorer Schools Robotics Competition
The Location:
Jet Propulsion Laboratory
Pasadena, CA
March 17, 2009
The Competitors:
21 Teams
12 Schools
4th – 12th Grades
The Mission:
Use Lego robots to explore and return samples to base camp on Mars.
Emcee:
This is a very elaborate super structure here, okay, they’ve got like a forklift coming into the mineral formation. Oh, dead on.
Student:
I really like robotics a lot.

Student:
I like Legos and robots and it’s fun programming them and building them.
Emcee:
It looks like they’re actually going to reach over and grab that hut.  One minute. There you go.
Nice, and a little extra help. Excellent, good job.
Teacher
I feel that the students that participate in our club and who came to the competition, this is one way for them to really show what they’ve learned and what they love to do. And it really gives them a chance to shine and be in the spotlight.
Emcee:
Good, a little action, and nice going.
Student:
You have to find the right program and the right setting. You need a successful program to have your mission accomplished.
Student:
The computer always does what you tell it to, but that’s not always what you want it to do.
Emcee:
Plenty of time to deliver the methane sensor. Oh, hooked the volcano.
Teacher
They’ve been great team-building skills. I think that’s huge, the social aspect. They have learned to apply mathematic skills. It’s integrated, it’s real, it’s every day.
Emcee:
There’s a flip system here, and no question about it, nice work.
Teacher:
They’ve been able to take what they’ve learned and they investigate the ongoing missions in space now, and they can discuss it with their parents and other students in a really mature and knowledgeable way.
Emcee
They've got a volcano. Oh my goodness.
Teacher:
They step up and they learn so much and they feel like experts and they have had the experience of a lifetime today.
Student:
Some people might think robotics is nerdy but I just tell them it’s not. It’s cool, you actually get to program it and build it and once you see it in competition you feel proud.
To learn more about student robotic competitions:
http://www.usfirst.org
For educational resources:
education.jpl.nasa.gov

View all Videos