The RHS Robotics Magnet strand accepts students with varying levels of robotics experience. They master the essential processes of identifying and solving
problems from an engineering approach. Because robotics is an applied science, teams of students learn to combine their individual science and math
skills in a project-based, experience-rich environment. Robotics Magnet strand 9th graders having had elementary or junior high robotics magnet coursework
can advance to computer science courses covering the software-dynamics of robotics as students with less coursework and experience catch up on basic
robotics concepts. Critically, the combination of teamwork and competitions challenges the knowledge level of all robotics students to evolve as they learn
concepts and skills from one another.
YEAR 1 While on different study tracks, students gain foundational tools in basic physics, logic and problem-solving. Stepping beyond two-dimensionaldesign, they use Vex Robotics Design Systems, a conceptual, construction-programming platform for secondary and college students;
it emphasizes the cyclical process of task definition, design, manufacturing and performance.
YEAR 2 Students begin reading blueprints and designing in Auto-CAD, then advance to machining operations. The fundamentals of electricity, electronics and circuitry are introduced. Design it. Build it. Test it. Students prepare for the FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Robotics Competition, or ¤FRC¤: `The varsity sport for the mind, FRC combines the excitement of sport with the rigors of science and technology. Students learn
from professional engineers; build and compete with a robot of their own design, learn to use sophisticated software and hardware, compete and cooperate in alliances and tournaments andqualify for over $11 million in college scholarships (FIRST, December 11, 2009: www.usfirst.org/ roboticsprograms/frc).
To date, two members of the RHS Robotics Team have been awarded FIRST Robotics Competition scholarships to colleges of their choice.
YEAR 3 Students learn and use Mastercam, a complementary program to AutoCAD that produces a G-code file for milling and lathing. The curriculum is balanced between three lab days/week and two classroom days/week, with time also spent in after-school team building and robot construction for annual FIRST Robotics Competitions.
YEAR 4 All of the skills that students have accrued come to fruition with independent study through which they can gain certification as young engineers. Students design and build a t-shirt canon used at football games. As defending champions of The BattleBots National Championship in 2007 and 2009, students design and manufacture a metal robot capable of wielding offensive and defensive measures. Additionally, students defend the unparalleled chievement of winning the 2004, 2007 and 2009 Battlebots ¤Best Engineered Robot¤ Award. Our two-hour block schedule allows students to fully explore and master the many aspects of robotic engineering. RHS Robotics Magnet students exit the program prepared to enter the most rigorous college or university robotics programs, or robotics/engineering emphasis training schools. They gain the technological, mathematical and scientific experience to compete for selective post-secondary academic and career positions, and to be recognized among those who will define the vision and evolution of robotics or this century.