Makey Makey RC Robots

Over the past few weeks my year 5 kids have been working hard on a little Scratch/Makey Makey project I wanted to share with you. It started off as a nice and simple task, but we’ve added and developed it into a great little project!

The task was to create toy robot animation that worked with a remote control. It’s great for teaching the kids how to use the broadcast and receive tabs. They’re both really useful and great for them to learn. Great for all future projects! The idea is for each of the 6 buttons on the remote to ahve a different output on the robot. To make things a little easier our designs I got the kids to add a screen to the chest of their bots, making simple outputs easier for the lower ability to achieve.

After an hour or so they kids had their buttons all working. We played around with the costumes a little, and added a few trickier outputs for the higher ability pupils. The best ones were the gifs on the stomach. Fiddly to program, but they look really impressive and the kids thought they were amazing! I really need to do a little guide for importing a gif to Scratch, someone remind me soon!

After making the slow coaches catch up for homework, we moved things up a notch and grabbed the Makey Makey kits. The kids spent the lesson creating their own remote controls from cardboard and split pins. We though of it as our own version of AR! Linking everything up was a bit of a tangle, but in the end I think they looked great! The kids loved the making aspect of the project, and it was really cool to see them problem solving as they had buttons tripping off each other, and needing to work out how to add to their programming to get the cardboard controls working.

So what started as a quick little idea soon snowballed into this three week project. I’d really recommend this one though. Loads for the kids to learn and they were all really engaged with it.

If you want to have a play with the Scratch Robot and see inside then click here. 

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