We hope your school year is off to a great start and you are feeling excited for the 2017 robotics season! We realize that each of you are beginning your robotics build season at different times - some of you have already started and some of you are just beginning to form your team. Regardless of where you are, we have a lot of valuable information to share with you. There is a lot of material below, but we promise it is all very important!
-The Robot Team
Robot To Do
We have a favor to ask and we are willing to pay your team if you can help us!
We have awarded a total of 480 schools robotics grants since 2016, but we still have over 1000+ Indiana schools who have not applied! We have 200 more first year State Robotics Grants left to award and we don't want this opportunity to go to waste! We need your help encouraging schools within your district, community, or anywhere across the state to apply!
For every team you recruit, we will provide you with anAwareness Grant. This grant will cover your $150 team registration fee* OR a 2nd team $100 registration fee AND we will continue paying for each additional team you recruit!
*if you were awarded a State Robotics Grant in 2017, your team registration is already covered, so the Awareness Grant would pay for team registration for any additional team you decide to start
Project Lead the Way Activities
Don't forget to plan time during the school year to incorporate the PLTW activity into your classroom. These activities are designed for students in 1st - 5th grade, align with the new Indiana Science standards, and incorporate the VEX IQ Robotics Super Kit! This activity will expose more students to robotics within your school (it's also a requirement of the grant!)
Join us on Facebook and Twitter if you haven't already! If you are reading this and you have a Facebook or Twitter account we NEED you to follow us @TPF4Yrobots! We want to hear about the cool things your robotics team is doing! Tag us @TPF4Yrobots so we can experience all the fun your students are having!
Example of things to promote:
Tell us how your team is doing
Tell us about an accomplishment your team has made
Tell us how your robot building is going
Tell us about a presentation your team has made in the community
Share a coaching tip for others to learn from
Each month we will pick a teacher by random who has tagged us in a Facebook or Twitter post and send them Robot SWAG!
Follow us on Twitter and Facebook for the latest news and updates. Please be sure to tag @TPF4YRobots when you post fun Robot-related stuff!
Host a Competition
Yes, you can host a competition! Last year we had 44 competitions throughout the state, 30 of those competitions were hosted by brand new coaches, and this year we hope to have over 60 events!
We understand that the thought of hosting a competition might be a bit overwhelming! That is why Randy Decker, from REC, has a great training program and network of other event partners to help you get started.
For those of you who are interested in hosting a robotics competition, please email Randy Decker (firstname.lastname@example.org). Randy will share information about being an event partner, provide training resources, and help you get your event registered. We can also connect you with veteran competition hosts from around the state!
Below are just a few of the benefits your school will get out of planning and hosting a robot event:
Provides your team the convenience of a competition right at home!
Gives administrators, members of your community, and other students the opportunity to experience VEX IQ robotics in action!
Raises funds for your school or your robot team! Competition entry fees are typically $30 per team. $30 x 30 teams = $900 profit for your school!
Additionally, there is also the opportunity to earn money from concessions and/or merchandise.
Robot To Know
Meet Stretch Bot
VEX IQ has built a new robot that can play this year's game Ringmaster and is capable of picking up 3 rings. The instructions can be found online HERE.
Please Note - Although this robot is capable of playing Ringmaster and is a good "starting point" for teams, we want to encourage our students to come up with their own design. That means their robot could be a modification of Stretch Bot or a completely different design all together. Allow students to use their imagination and creativity to make their robot unique and different than any other team. How will your team solve this year's challenge?
If you are a brand new Robot Educator, planning the season ahead may feel like a task! If you need a little guidance, visit our Robot Calendar for suggestions on how to structure your season!
A reminder that if you have questions during the season we have compiled a lot of useful Robot Resources on our website.
The REC Foundation launched Girl Powered, in collaboration with VEX Robotics, to double the number of girls on robotics teams over the next 5 years. Through Girl Powered, REC will provide tools needed to successfully reach out and engage more girls in the classroom and on the competition field.
You can now order your robotics team apparel at a discounted rate directly through our website! All shirts already have the sponsorship logos on the back. Simply add shirts to your cart and upload your team's art work. Shirts will ship to your school in 7-8 days.
If you ever run into problems with team registration, competition sign-ups, or robot parts, please remember that REC's Regional Support Manager for Indiana, Randy Decker, is available to help you during the robotics season.