Children learn robotics at Lipscomb summer camp...
Editor’s note: The following stories were written by students at the 2014 Lipscomb University/Tennessee High School Press Association Journalism Camp.
By Arden Igleheart, Victoria Curry and Billy Pulley
Few people can say they’ve built a functional robotic arm in their lifetimes.
The children aged 8-14 at the Lipscomb University and Nissan Engineering and Robotics Camp, however, will be able to say so by the end of the week.
The students have four days to create a moving robotic arm that can pick up various items. They are building it entirely from over 100 individual parts, most as simple as screws and pieces of plastic.
For many of the campers, this work satisfies a long interest in engineering and building. This is an especially unique experience for 12 of the campers, who come from underprivileged families living in Cayce Place, a low-income public housing facility in Nashville. They were provided tuition and transportation from Nashville free of charge.
“My parents knew [this camp] was right up my alley because I like to put stuff together, take stuff apart, and program stuff,” said 12-year-old Andrew. “And so, my parents knew I’d like it.”
“When I was a lot younger I used to imagine things I would want to build,” said Michael, 10. “I’ve been learning about gears and how they work.”
The students are being taught about diverse aspects of robotics.
“We’ve just been learning about gears and how things work and what robots are and what they’re not, and how to use tools,” Angela said.
The counselors have noticed that the campers learn broader lessons, too.
“[They learn to] try a lot of hands on stuff, and not to give up because some of this stuff is kind of hard,” said Paige Barnes. “So I think this gives them a lot of experience with working this kind of stuff.”
The children believe this camp will help them with professions in the future.
“I think I’m learning about engineering, programming, and working with robots,” Andrew said. “I think engineering is up my alley and I’ve wanted to be an engineer,” adding that he’s looking forward to all the “cool things” he’ll make.
“If I become an inventor, I would have to know about robotics,” said Cordelo, 10, adding that he would like to be an inventor because “you can build anything you want.”
Lipscomb’s robotics camps cultivate creative kids
By Jade Capps, Katurah Dunn, Ethan Howard and Makaree Lomax
The Hughes Center classroom was inundated with the children’s innate curiosity: tables covered with a plethora of parts, the sounds of children’s excited whispers and the click and clatter of the screws and hammers.
This is Lipscomb University/Nissan BisonBot Camp, a robotics program during June and July dedicated to teaching engineering to Tennessee’s youth.
One feature of the camp is building a robot arm, followed by a competition that awards the best functioning robot.
“The week goes on it’s more about hands-on,” said camp director Greg Nordstrom. “As the week starts it’s more about how to learn.”
The camp does more than just teaching kids to follow instructions; it inspires kids to build and engineer things left only to the imagination. When asked what their dream gizmo was, they responded with air-powered elevators, flying ships and robotic cars that jump.
“Even if they don’t become an engineer,” said Jessie Robertson, a former camper and now a counselor, “it [Robotics Camp] has given them other skills like working with other people and spatial skills.”
Kids help make a difference at Robotics Camp
By Carrie Brake, Jai Cosey, Alexandria Dillihunt and Taylor Mayberry
Kids and technology together can make a difference.
You can see this at Lipscomb’s Robotics Camp, where kids between age 8 and 12 get the chance to experience engineering and technology…and build a robot along the way.
The youngsters come to camp not only to build stuff but also to help the future.
“I might make an invention that could be used to help humanity,” said Desmond Henderson, 11.
Said 12-year-old Kaleb Williford: “I probably would help humans by building stuff.”