On March 25th 2017, we attended the Walker-Jones DC FLL Scramble to mentor FLL-aged children on EV3 programming. There were a total of seven FLL teams, as well as a Jr.FLL team. They were all really enthusiastic kids with a budding passion for robotics.
We demonstrated the line following program on our EV3 demo-bots. We used an old FLL mat and put black tape all around the designated course. The main objective of this demo was to show the kids how the color sensor operates, so we helped them understand the reflected light intensity, or RLI, which helps the robot understand the difference between the black lines on the mat and the surrounding white region. We also explained how to make the robot move in a zigzag manner to help it remain on the line as it goes forward. In the process, the kids also picked up a lot of programming tips, such as when to use the loop blocks and switch blocks.
By the end of our workshop, the kids had their own line following programs up and running like perfectly. We also showed them what the next level of FIRST was like by showing them the CAD model of our current FTC robot, which really amazed them. We hope we inspired these kids to continue down the road with FIRST, as well as with their interests in STEM. We look forward to be a part of this opportunity next year!