Updated: Dec 4, 2019
Halloween is fast approaching and we couldn't be more excited here at The STEAM Connection! Our entire team is either in high school or college and we have been working hard to keep those grades up! Sadly, this means that we can't post as much as we want to. But, we still have been working extremely hard to increase STEAM accessibility and affordability within our communities through working one-on-one with students, mentoring robotics teams, and by sending Every Kid Gets a Robot all over the United States to kids for free.
For those who are new, Every Kid Gets a Robot is an $18.95 dollar robot that Danielle Boyer, our founder, invented to bring robotics education to children in an accessible way. We feel like so many resources are way too expensive and we wanted to help shape that. Our mission is to provide STEAM education that shapes the futures of those we educate and it means so much to us to be able to do that.
Stay tuned till the end of our blog post to learn about our spooky Every Kid Gets a Robot!
Shapetober with SOLIDWORKS Education
This October, we participated in #Shapetober with SOLIDWORKS Education. Shapetober was a way for the SOLIDWORKS community to share their creativity through their creations in SOLIDWORKS, xDesign, the SOLIDWORKS Education Edition, and the SOLIDWORKS App for Kids.
Follow along with our work on our Instagram page @danielleboyer.
Here are our favorite contributions:
Spooky Robot Edit by Ella
This little guy, designed in the SOLIDWORKS App for Kids, was an edit of a robot designed by Danielle as an example for Engineering Design Club. Ella is in fourth grade, and the skull was adapted from the official Shapetober skull by Justin Burton.
Download an STL file of the robot on GrabCAD here. Or, find it on the SOLIDWORKS App for Kids under Public Projects.
They See Me Rollin' by Avi Our favorite class break activity (watching cat and Roomba videos) inspired this fantastic CAD of a cat riding an iRobot Roomba. Avi was in one of our classes and designed this little guy on his own. Should we 3D print it?
Images taken from Google Images.
Download an STL file of this cat on GrabCAD here. Or, find it on the SOLIDWORKS App for Kids main page under Staff Picks.
A Spooky Every Kid Gets a Robot
4th grade student Emily and our Founder, Danielle have been hard at work on a spooky Every Kid Gets a Robot. They designed it in the SOLIDWORKS App for Kids. Emily had a few important design elements that she wanted to implement: eyeball wheels, a ghost riding the robot, and orange motors.
The robot prints for this robot were donated by Fisher Unitech (now CATI).
Mission 1: Orange Motors
Danielle painted the yellow motors with orange paint to create the desired effect.
Mission 2: Decorate the Wheels Based off of Emily's design, the already orange wheels printed in PLA by Fisher Unitech were decorated with spooky wire and googly eyes on both sides.
The back wheel matched the black chassis. Wire was added for that additional spooky effect. This was found to not be entirely practical, but it did look pretty cool. No eyeballs were added so that the wheel could still spin in the chassis (semi) freely.
Mission 3: Make a Ghost Ride the Robot
For the ghost riding Every Kid Gets a Robot, we chose "Cute Ghost" by designer Robby Nowell on Thingiverse. We placed some of the electronics inside of the hollow ghost so that we could make it more aesthetically pleasing. Download the ghost here.
We printed it on the Sindoh 3DWOX DP200, which is an educational 3D printer that was donated to us. The ghosts were printed with a raft for ease in removal from the printing bed. They were printed in white Sindoh PLA. We absolutely love Sindoh filament because it is made out of recycled plastic, which means a lot to us here at The STEAM Connection.
Mission 4: Wiring, Programming, & Testing
We combined all of these missions because we aren't going to go into too much depth on our Every Kid Gets a Robot process. We wired the robot and placed some of the electronics into the hollow ghost so that we could make it look cooler. We programmed the robot with Arduino IDE (Java, C, and C++) and control it via an application called Blynk. We tested the robot and made sure that everything was running smoothly. We weren't sure if the painted gearboxes on the motors would operate correctly, but we were relieved when they did.
The Results! We think that this is one sick robot! Here is a video of our process and a few pictures of the final product. Spooky spider 3D prints with cyclops-style googly eyes were added to each side of the back of the robot. For reference, the two wheels attached to the motors are the front and the black wheel that gets dragged behind the motors is the back.
Have a Happy Halloween! We will have another long-awaited post on STEAM diversity coming out next week. Before then, stay up to date on our work on our Instagram @danielleboyer or on Twitter @danielleboyerr. Danielle is constantly posting about the events she attends and we post about all of the cool projects we've been up to!