Students in Karen Giesler’s class at Rockwood School District's Center for Creative Learning in Ellisville are “getting geared up” as they use gears to create movement and precise speed for robots. The goal for these fourth and fifth-grade students, according to a district news release, is to determine the gear ratios and programming needed to compete in two races: a “snail race” for the slowest robot and a “drag race” for the fastest. With each adjustment, students test their robots down the halls of the school.
Giesler stated that students must figure out what adjustments are needed to control the speed of their robots. "Throughout the process, they keep track of their combinations so they know what adjustment to make next.”
“As a teacher, it’s exciting to watch students combine technology through computer programing and problem-solving skills to accomplish the challenges. I think I enjoy the activity as much as they do,” she said.
Earlier this month, students had the opportunity to see gears in action with a go-kart, thanks to parent Kurt Nufer and his son Nick, who shared their experiences racing go-karts. During the visit, students learned how gears can make the difference between winning and losing a race.