Keeping it REAL

Students interact with challenges that address a real-world problem, creating a workable solution and presenting this to an authentic audience.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

LEGO - But not as you know it

LEGO, It's a great toy, and is definitely more than just a children's toy. When LEGO was first established around 1932, the company only had two employees, the company owner along with his twelve year old son. They started making step ladders, ironing boards and wooden toys to sell. They worked alone until 1939, when they started hiring more people, and their first LEGO Factory had ten employees. They went on making wooden toys, for children to play with. It wasn't until 1949 when we saw the plastic LEGO Bricks which we enjoy building with to this day. From then on, the company evolved into a massive success, and continued to make their "Automatic Binding Bricks". To this day, LEGO is used by many adults along with children, and building competitions are held regularly for people of certain ages.

LEGO in the early days
We have all seen the everyday LEGO Bricks, and I am sure (no matter how old you are) you have used them before, whether that be by yourself, or with someone else, LEGO is always fun to use. Back in the day, yes, your creations may have had wheels, or something to allow it to move, but the technology we see today obviously changes this a lot. 1998 was the year that we saw the LEGO "Mindstorms" kits released, and these have evolved a lot after its first release.

Mindstorms is essentially a robot, which you make out of LEGO. Back in 1998, it was essentially a LEGO brick with some plugs and wires, but these days, they can do what ever you want them to do. Today, the main brick can be programmed using your iPad and can do virtually anything you wish it to do.

The LEGO "Mindstorms"
programmable brick
This Term, Grade 7's are working on making a LEGO Mindstorm robot that is helpful for someone/something. Groups have thought of some great ideas of what to make their robot do. Some examples are:
  • Throwing balls for pets
  • Rubbing out whiteboards
  • Using a magnet to pick up small metal objects
  • Delivering drinks/sauce around a table
  • Stirring drinks
  • Alarm clocks
  • Picking objects up (Like a forklift)
And many other groups have had amazing ideas, and have built their robots with a high degree of detail.
It is amazing to see the amount of thought and effort that has been put into this topic by certain groups. It just takes one little idea to change the world, and Integrated Learning is a great starting block for this.

If you would like to see what some groups have been doing, you can check out their comments in the comments section below this post.

Written by:
Liam Eugarde-Grade 7 Integrated Learning Student

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