Robotics represents an ever changing field, improving our everyday lives whether vacuuming one's living room, bringing products that one ordered on the internet to the person that will ship them, and also in being used in outer space and exploring other planets. All of these robots are made for different needs, yet all have something in common: They all require onboard power to allow them to complete their task.
The more efficient a battery cell, the more it will allow an object, in our case robotics to run longer, be stronger, and be autonomous for a longer period of time.
In my unit entitled,
You can have my dead battery, No Charge,
students will learn how batteries work. We will do a series of tests to see how much energy different batteries will produce. We will then weigh the batteries to determine the weight to battery output ratio to determine which types of batteries produce the most energy compared to their weight. Students will also learn how batteries in objects that they use every day such as cell phones are recharged.
This unit will help students understand how batteries work and how they have improved over time. All students use handheld devices in their daily lives, and some know the basic design and operation of these devices. However, most do not know the details of how the devices are powered. This unit will study battery power and how it works.
Classroom lessons and activities include: The ways in which the design process is used to improve batteries, the history of the battery, and how batteries work and their relation to robotics.
How the design process is used to manufacture: Students will review the existing design report that is used in class, and they will see how similar this process is to their robots they design, how the design process in used in manufacturing to produce items.
History of the battery:
How batteries work and their relation to robotics:
What are the current types of batteries used in robotics and how they work. Once this is learned students will understand how they are related to robotics and how they have helped evolve the field of robotics.
Teaching strategies will include acting out systems (using their bodies/movements to act out a system), cooperative learning, interdisciplinary teaching (pairing with math), daily reviews of previously learned material, teaching vocabulary throughout the unit, graphic organizers, hands on/ active participation, video/ visual graphs, problem solving instruction, and gamification (replacing traditional unit evaluation, such as tests and quizzes, with a game/competition to evaluate their created robot).
The unit will align with each of New Haven Public Schools 21
Century Competencies: Problem solving and critical thinking, creativity and innovation, communication and collaboration, initiative, self-direction and accountability, citizenship and responsibility, and accessing and analyzing information. Problem solving and critical thinking, creativity and innovation, and communication and collaboration will be use throughout the unit. It will be seen in all the activities in order for the students to create their own design and make modifications throughout the process. Initiative, self-direction and accountability, citizenship and responsibility will be seen more in the group work sessions. Students will have to meet deadlines, give their peers feedback, and reflect on their own experiences.