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Steph Elder, B.Eng.Mgt. '16

(Civil Engineering) | Big Ideas: Connecting Young People with STEM Opportunities

The robots are tiny and round, with flashing lights and lasers capable of reading colours.

The girls are typical boisterous Grade 7 students.

But put the two together under the guidance of an enthusiastic instructor and what you get is the type of learning that might just change a future.

With simple coloured patterns they’ve drawn on a piece of paper, the girls direct the movements of the tiny devices known as Ozobots. Different colour combinations instruct the robot to speed up, slow down or make a u-turn. Four small squares of alternating red and green tell it to perform a tornado move – spinning rapidly in circles – before continuing on its path across the page.

For the students, who live in one of Hamilton’s most economically disadvantaged neighbourhoods, the activity appears to be more about fun then science. But what they’re learning amidst the laughter is how to program the robots, says Steph Elder, Outreach Director for Youth Programs with McMaster’s Faculty of Engineering.

Full Article Here