Friday, October 14, 2022

In short, I am busy: STEM challenge: Brushbots


Hard to tell, but they're watching it vibrate
I've purchased many kits and finally decided this year that the extra expense wasn't worth it. I bought the components and it was less expensive, I think, and easier overall. If I was going to buy kits, I'd go with Brown Dog Gadgets, which are the simplest and least-expensive.
  • 2 packs of four bristlebots from Brown Dog Gadgets (roughly $20 apiece)
  • 20 button cell batteries ($7)
  • 15 mini vibrating motors ($15)
  • Toothbrushes (about $1 apiece at Walmart)
  • Double-sided tape ("borrowed" from processing, to whom I now owe a roll of double-sided tape)
  • Wiggly eyes, pipe cleaners, and glue dots (should have just used those to start with) from supplies
  • Leftover pieces from the past years we've done brushbots
Resources and Display Titles
I did not put anything out.

Kids will have the opportunity to create a mini robot and learn some basic electronic skills along the way! Registration is required and space is limited, so if you are unable to attend please let the library know. There is no age restriction, but you must have the following skills to attend:

Required skills:
  • Ability to work independently and wait patiently for assistance when needed.
  • Can safely use required materials with minimal supervision (scissors, wire, batteries)
  • Have the patience to work on a small, fiddly project
Reminder of the "tools vs toys" rule.


  • 7-26-18
    • Attendance: 21
    • Notes: All but three of the people signed up came, plus several last-minute volunteers and other kids who happened to be there. I really did not want extras, b/c you can never tell if the batteries are still good, so I encouraged them to make more than one! Kids love this program, but honestly it's not really my thing. So, it's one to have volunteers to help out with! I forgot to print out the instructions and stuff for games - it was kind of a chaotic program due to other stuff going on.
  • 2017
    • Attendance: 5
    • Notes: There might actually have been more? The weather was awful, I do remember that.
  • 7-22-16
    • Attendance: 12
    • Notes: I felt very "meh" about this one, but it turned out really well. The kids loved it and we had extras (which was good b/c a couple motors died). Next year I'll buy the brushbot kits from Maker Shed when they're in stock and pre-strip the wires.

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