Hello, my name is Heidi and I have been going to Stem club since the start of last year. My stem club group is called the Silly Sausages. I do it with Amy, Aviaya, Isabella and Samuel.
I am ten years old (nearly eleven though).
This is our second week of a four-week project: making Bugbots. To start with in week 1, Nigel had already cut out the wooden bases of the Bugbots with the laser cutter. It was our job to spray paint them. I made mine look a bit like a starry night.
This week we started off screwing an Arduino UNO onto a sheet of plastic which was also cut by laser and was made to fit under our wooden bases for the bug bot.
The next step was to put a sensor shield on top of our Arduino UNO.
A sensor shield means that we can access the inputs and outputs of the Arduino more easily.
Following on from that the next step was to put on our motors so that our bug bot can move. Next week or the week after that we are going to attach the wheels onto the motors so that it can drive.
Our next task was to strip and tin the wire ends. For stripping we used a little red wire stripper to remove about 1 cm of the rubber covering to lay the ends of the wire bare.
Tinning the wires means covering the bare wire ends with solder. This was done using the soldering iron. We needed to do this in order to be able to solder the wires onto the motors.
Here is a picture of the bugbot so far, including the motors, the Arduino UNO underneath the sensor shield, and the Motor Controller, which allows the Arduino to control how fast each of the motors go and in what direction.
After all these steps, Nigel gave each of us a piece of wood shaped like the one in the photo below. We screwed these bits of clear plastic onto it. This will be the front of the bug bot and later on, touch sensors will be added to the pointy bits, so whenever the bugbots bump into something, the sensor will click and send a signal to the Arduino, and the bugbot will reverse and change direction.
This is what I started my bugot base off with: my starry night wooden base and a sheet of clear plastic which is a bit smaller than the blue base.
I would recommend stem club for you if you are interested in making cool things, it is SUPER awesomely fun!
By Heidi Smale( from the silly sausages!!!!!!!!!)