Name of Activity Battle Bots
Author Laura Fradin, Jake Hellman
Keywords NXT, robotics, mindstorms, 5th grade, aguayo, JQS
Subject NXTs
Grade Level 5
Time 4 Hours Total
Brief Description Students will build and program a “fighting robot”
Lesson Objectives: -learn mindstorms programming
-build with NXT kits
Materials Needed: -NXT kits
-adhesive velcro
Preparation and Set Up: -Make copies of worksheets.
-students will be working in pairs
-hand out NXT kits
Necessary Background Students must have already had some experience with both building with the NXT pieces and Mindstorms programming
Procedure 1) Explain the tasks and rules:


  1. Robots will be built with NXT pieces only (with the exception of a thumbtack and a small piece of velcro)

-the small piece of velcro will be used to attach the thumbtack to the robot on the day of the competition

  1. All robots must involve some programming done through MIndstorms

  2. Robots can use the sound sensor and/or the ultrasonic sensor. Light/Sound sensors will not be very useful for this assignment)

  3. You get to chose the location of both the thumbtack and the balloon (both will be added on competition day)

  4. You have three weeks to complete building and programming. The final week will be a competition day.

2) Have students complete the Planning Worksheet (see attached) and approve their design. This ensures that students have an idea of their future program and will help with the building process as well as forces them to think about their future Mindstorms program. 3) Hand out NXT kits only AFTER you have talked to them about their designs. 4) After groups are done building their robots, let them begin programming. 5) On the final day (Day 4) of this activity, have students attach their thumbtack and balloon where ever they would like on their robot. Make sure thumbtacks are securely fastened so no one gets hurt. 6) Create a bracket for their robot battles on the board. If there is time do more than one bracket to see how different robots combat different opponents.

Modifications: Instead of having them pop balloons, you could have them “sumo wrestle” and have to push the other robot out of a circle/square of tape. This would probably be for older kids because it would require more intense programming including a method for the robot to remain in the circle/square.
Reference 1
Online Reference(s)
Previous Activity (if applicable) Say Hello!
Umbrella Unit/Curriculum (if applicable) NXT Robotics

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