Botball is an afterschool activity on offer to Upper Department and Sixth Form students. The programme exposes students to a real application of the subject matter they have been learning across the school. By designing, building, programming and documenting robots, students use Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) in hands-on projects that reinforce their learning in addition to building team-working, time-management and interpersonal skills.
The club offers students the opportunity to be part of the school Robotics Team, BStroniKs, which takes part in two overseas visits to Carnegie Mellon University, Qatar, for an initial programming workshop in January and then a Robotics Tournament in March.
Botball allows attendees to learn about current robotics technology by participating in a variety of interactive exercises and activities. Students use reusable robotics kit as well as use of the software and technical manual documentation.
Student teams from across the school will learn to create and program fully autonomous robots around a themed game board with attempt to score points on a themed obstacle course. The game is always complex and requires students to consider multiple strategies and to work as a team to ensure that the robot designs, their core programming and the strategy chosen work together seamlessly to ensure that the highest possible score is obtained.
Teachers work as mentors and advisers but take no active part in the design, programming or competition process. The team has a student Manager, Secretary and Heads of Strategy, Programming and Design. It is the students themselves who run the project and who, ultimately, determine its success.
For further information please look at the official Botball website, www.botball.org. You may then wish to speak to the of the Robotics Coordinator Mr James Henderson.
Above: Members of our student robotics team, BStroniKs, develop their problem solving and team working skills by constructing and programming robots to solve specific obstacle courses and point-based challenges. We have successfully competed at the annual Botball Educational Robotics competition at Carnegie Mellon University, Qatar, in competition with other school teams from across the Middle East and Africa region. In 2012, the team returned having reached the quarter finals and been selected from almost thirty other teams to receive the Judges’ Choice Award, recognising their teamwork and adaptability. 2014 was a very successful year with the team accumulating the best points the team as ever achieved and building on future skills and developments for the coming Botball challenge in 2015. For 2016 the team are preparing to welcome new recruits to the world of control systems and robotics and to take an active part inter school tournaments to allow robotics to be accessed by all students with an interest in leading technology.
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