Artbots 2.0


Our Koalas were energetic this week, so we kicked off STEAM Club with a game of Human Hungry-Hungry Hippos to let them burn a little energy off before we started our craft.  This week’s craft is a variation of last year’s artbot, but in place of the restaurant to-go soup containers and 1.5 volt motors, we used pool noodles and an electric toothbrush.

Before the craft started I went out to Joann Fabric and shopped Amazon for “flare” or bling to decorate our artbots, I purchased googly eyes, rhinestones, buttons, fashion tape, pipe cleaners, yarn, and puffy paint…..the day of the event, two of the volunteer moms hid the puffy paint, so we didn’t get to use that… messy plans were foiled 🙂

I also purchased markers for the legs and pool noodles and precut each of the pool noodles into 9 inch segments.  In retrospect, I could have made them 8 inches.

Kids started the project by inserting a battery into their vibrating toothbrush (because we needed so many, we had to get them from two vendors, so we used ones from the Dollar Tree and from Amazon. Note, the ones from Dollar Tree were cheaper and worked better). Once the battery was in the toothbrush and the students were sure that the toothbrush functioned, they inserted the toothbrush into their segment of pool noodle (note, some of the batteries that came with the toothbrushes were AWFUL, so have backups on hand). After inserting the pool noodle, kids used a combination of scotch tape and fashion tape to secure the marker legs (each bot gets three), the bots work best if the legs ARE NOT perfectly balances, the wobble helps.  After connecting  marker legs, kids used assorted bling and hot glue to decorate their bots (note Elmer’s glue probably would have worked).

Once kids decorated their bots, they tested them on paper and then modified as needed.

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