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I ROBOT CS! WITH 25 SCIENCE PROJECTS FOR KIDS

Carmella Van Vleet Illustrated by Tom Casteel


CONTENTS Timeline . . . iv Introduction . . . 1 Robots Rule! Chapter 1 . . . 13 The History of Robotics Chapter 2 . . . 34 What Do Robots Look Like? Chapter 3 . . . 46 How Do Robots Do Things? Chapter 4 . . . 59 How Do Robots Sense Things? Chapter 5 . . . 68 How Do Robots Think? Glossary  *  Metric Conversions Resources  *  Essential Questions  * Index

Interested in primary sources? Look for this icon. Use a smartphone or tablet app to scan the QR code and explore more! Photos are also primary sources because a photograph takes a picture at the moment something happens. You can find a list of URLs on the Resources page. If the QR code doesn’t work, try searching the internet with the Keyword Prompts to find other helpful sources.

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INTRODUCTION

ROBOTS RULE! Where was the last time you saw a robot? Have you read about one in a book? Or seen one in a movie? Maybe you played with one in a video game. Sometimes, people think robots exist only in our imagination or as something that might be real in the future. But actually, robots are all around us right now! A robot is a machine that can move and do tasks without help from a human. This means they can gather information from their environment, use that information to decide what to do or how to act, and then perform a task. Robots can sense, think, and act on their own.

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robot: a machine that can

move and do tasks without help from a human.

radio wave: a type of invisible wave used to transmit radio and television signals and for navigation.

sensor: something that allows

Look around you right now. Are there any machines that would fit this description of robot? What about your television? Hmm . . . let’s check.

A television picks up radio waves or uses cables to play shows and movies. But it doesn’t do any WORDS TO KNOW physical tasks. Maybe televisions of the future will be able to tell when you’re watching a movie and they’ll make popcorn! Remote-control toys aren’t robots either because they must be told what to do.

a robot to see or sense their environment.

What about one of those automatic vacuum cleaners? Yes! Those are robots. They have sensors that allow them to sense or see their environment. They use that information to move around, and they do tasks, such as suck up dirt and other debris.

STOP AND GO!

Robots are used everywhere around the world. One of these places is Kinshasa, the capital of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. There, two 8-foot-tall robots direct traffic and help people safely cross the street. These robots are solar powered and were invented by a team of female engineers, headed by an engineer named Isaie Therese. You can learn more about these robots and see them in action in this video.

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ROBOTS RULE! robotics: the science

DID YOU KNOW? Many of the jobs involved in robotics are STEM jobs. STEM is an abbreviation for science, technology, engineering, and math. You might also hear it referred to as STEAM. The A in STEAM stands for art and design.

Some people use the words robot and robotics as if they mean the same thing. But they have different meanings. Robotics is the science of designing, building, controlling, and operating robots.

of designing, building, controlling and operating robots.

STEM: an abbreviation

for science, technology, engineering, and math. STEAM includes art and design.

technology: the tools,

methods, and systems used to solve a problem or do work.

engineering: the use

of science, math, and creativity in the design and construction of things.

WORDS

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As you can imagine, creating and operating robots can take a lot of experts from many different scientific fields. Some of these fields include engineering, math, and, computer programming.

THE SENSE-THINK-ACT CYCLE

Robots use what’s called the Sense-Think-Act cycle to accomplish something. ** SENSE: A robot uses sensors, such as a camera, to collect information about its surroundings. ** THINK: A robot uses this information to decide what to do next. ** ACT: After a robot decides on a course of action, it then carries out that action.

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humanoid: looking like a human being.

WORDS

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WHAT DO WE USE ROBOTS FOR?

On television and in movies and science fiction books, robots often look like humans. A robot that looks like a human is called a humanoid . And they do jobs for people. Remember C-3PO? He was the fictional robot who helped Luke Skywalker in the movie Star Wars. Although most robots don’t look like humans in real life, they do help us in many ways. Because they are strong and don’t get tired, robots are good at helping us assemble items such as cars and other products in factories. THESE MOVIE ROBOTS ALL LOOK DIFFERENT!

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ROBOTS RULE! Some robots help us do jobs we don’t like, don’t have time for, or find boring. For example, they sweep our floors and clear our rain gutters and even clean cat litter boxes! Some robots save us time by serving drinks or food or making deliveries.

DID YOU KNOW? The word “robot” was invented in 1920 by a Czech playwright named Karl Capek (1890– 1938). He used it in his play Rosum’s Universal Robots, a story about a company who made human-looking robots that did all the work. Robots, or at least the earliest forms of robots, have been around for centuries.

Other robots help us explore places that would be too dangerous for humans, such as the ocean and other planets. They can also venture into burning houses or areas in the middle of war or natural disaster and serve as helpers.

THIS ROBOT HELPS KEEP YOUR HOUSE CLEAN!

CREDIT: KARLIS DAMBRANS, (CC BY 2.0)

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precise: exact or detailed.

WORDS

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AT’S A ROB

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Along the way, we’ll design, create, play games, and experiment with robotics using items you can easily find or recycle. Let’s get ready to explore!

ESSENTIAL QUESTIONS Each chapter of this book begins with an essential question to help guide your exploration of robotics. Keep the question in your mind as you read the chapter. INVESTIGATE! At the end of each chapter, use your design How many robots can journal to record your you find in your home thoughts and answers. right now? Do you

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think that number will change in the future?

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In Robotics! we’ll learn more about how robots help and entertain us in our everyday lives. We’ll learn about early robotics and how modern-day robots were developed. We’ll explore what robots might look like and behave like in the future. We’ll also discuss how robots sense their surroundings, how they make decisions, and how they move.

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Because robots can make tiny, precise movements, they can be found in many hospitals. Robots help doctors perform ITE KIN surgery, do specialized tests, or deliver D VOR FA O S ’ medicines to patients. TO


ROBOTS RULE! roboticist: a scientist who studies robotics.

GOOD ENGINEERING PRACTICES Every good roboticist keeps a design journal! In the first activity, you will make a notebook to use as a design journal. Engineers use the engineering design process to keep track of their inventions, and scientists use the scientific method to keep track of experiments.

data: information gathered from tests or experiments.

prototype: a working

model or mock-up that allows engineers to test their solution.

WORDS

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As you read through this book and do the activities, record your observations, data, and designs in an engineering design worksheet or a scientific method worksheet. When doing an activity, remember that there is no right answer or right way to approach a project. Be creative and have fun! Engineering Design Worksheet Problem: What problem are we trying to solve? Research: Has anything been invented to help solve the problem? What can we learn? Question: Are there any special requirements for the device? What is it supposed to do? Brainstorm: Draw lots of designs for your device and list the materials you are using! Prototype: Build the design you drew during brainstorming. This is your prototype.

Scientific Method Worksheet Question: What problem are we trying to solve? Research: What information is already known? Hypothesis/Prediction: What do I think the answer will be? Equipment: What supplies do I need?

Results: Test your prototype and record your observations.

Method: What steps will I follow?

Evaluate: Analyze your test results. Do you need to make adjustments? Do you need to try a different prototype?

Results: What happened and why?

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PROJECT! MAKE A ROBOT JOURNAL WITH BOOKMARK Journals are good places to write down things you don’t want to forget, such as questions you have, your ideas, or things you observe. They can also be a good place to sketch out designs. People in the STEM/STEAM fields, such as roboticists, often keep journals. You can make your own journal to keep while your read this book and learn about robotics.

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Use the ruler, pencil, and scissors to cut two pieces of thin cardboard that are 8.5 inches by 11 inches. These will be the covers of your journal.

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SUPPLIES **ruler **pencil **scissors **thin cardboard **foil **glue **8.5-by-11-inch paper with 3 holes **hole punch **3 binder rings or twist ties or string **2 buttons **tape

Spread out tin foil, shiny side down on a flat surface.

Spread a thin layer of glue on the top of each piece of cardboard. Before the glue dries, carefully lay them on top of the foil, glue-side down and press gently. Once the glue is set, cut off the extra foil leaving enough to wrap around the edges of the cardboard. Glue or tape these edges down.

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Place a sheet of paper on top of one of the covers. The cover should be foil-side up. Make sure the holes are on the left. Using the holes in the paper as a guide, punch matching holes in the cover. This will be your top cover.

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Lay the second cover foil-side down. Use a piece of paper and the hole punch to punch matching holes into the left side of this cover. This will be your bottom cover.

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PROJECT! 6

Sandwich several sheets of paper between the two covers. Use binder rings or twist ties or string to secure the paper and covers together. If you use twist ties or string, don't secure them too tightly. Leave space before you tie them off so you can open your journal.

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To make the bookmark, cut a piece of cardboard into a T shape as shown. Follow steps 2 and 3 for how to cover it with foil.

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Glue buttons on the top of the bookmark to look like robot eyes. Place the bookmark into your journal so the whole thing will look like a robot! To keep from losing the bookmark, tape one end of a piece of string to the back of the “robot head” and tie the other to one of the binder rings.

TRY THIS! Robots do many jobs. Brainstorm a list of

dangerous, boring, messy, or complicated jobs you’d like robots to do. Ask your family and friends for their ideas, too. Use your journal to record their responses.

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Juvenile Nonfiction  •  Education Resource

focus on science

WHERE WAS THE LAST TIME YOU SAW A ROBOT? DID YOU READ ABOUT ONE IN A BOOK OR SEE ONE IN A MOVIE? MAYBE YOU SAW ONE IN A VIDEO GAME!

** Make your own simple accelerometer ** Code a Sandwich

OTHER TITLES IN THE EXPLORE TECHNOLOGY SERIES

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EXPLORE YOUR WORLD books from Nomad Press include the following educational components:

Timeline of important events Age-appropriate, hands-on activities Links to online media Essential questions Primary sources, including maps, photographs, and letters Extensive back matter, including glossary, index, and resources PUB DATE: August 2019 PB: 9781619308138, $14.95 HC: 9781619308107, $19.95 2 Book Hardcover Set: 9781619308220, $37.95 eBook: all formats available, $12.99 Specs: 8 x 10, 96 pages, color interior with illustrations and photography Ages: 7–10 Grade Level: 3–5

Guided Reading Levels and Lexile measurements Publicity & Marketing: Co-op funds available Major national galley mailing Amazon Merchandising program National trade advertising, including: - Ingram - School Library - Follett Library - Booklist Journal - Baker & Taylor

Distributed by Baker & Taylor Publisher Services To order: orders@btpubservices.com, 888.814.0208 For more information about these books, contact Nomad Press: info@nomadpress.net, 802.649.1995

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** Build a Walking Robot

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Try these hands-on STEAM projects!

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Robotics! is part of a set of two Explore Technology books that introduce young digital natives to the history, science, and engineering of the tech world in which we live, using hands-on STEM activities, essential questions, links to online primary sources and real-life connections.

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Some people think robots exist only in our imagination, but actually, robots are all around us right now. Robotics! With 25 Science Projects for Kids offers readers ages 7 to 10 an introduction to the history, mechanics, and future use of robots! Kids discover how robots have changed over time and see how they now look, think, sense, move, and do things. Robotics discusses all the amazing things robots do for us—help us around the house, go into ITE KIN D VOR and explore dangerous situations, build our cars and other products, FA O S ’ assist during surgeries, and protect and entertain us.

Profile for Nomad Press

Robotics! With 25 Science Projects for Kids  

Where was the last time you saw a robot? Did you read about one in a book or see one in a movie? Maybe you saw one in a video game! Some peo...

Robotics! With 25 Science Projects for Kids  

Where was the last time you saw a robot? Did you read about one in a book or see one in a movie? Maybe you saw one in a video game! Some peo...