This month, we talked about motion sensors--how they work and how they're used. We also discussed infrared wavelengths and where they fall on the electromagnetic spectrum, how polarizing lens are used to filter out glare, and how bats use echolocation for navigation.
All this background information led to this month's project, which was an aliigator with a moving jaw that was triggered by a motion sensor.
Purrhaps you would like to try P.U.R.R. ? (Partner up with Rockin' Readers) Our newest program to encourage enthusiastic readers!
Children ages 5+ can sign up for a 30 minute reading session with Winchester High School Students (many with R.O.A.R experience).
Caretaker must remain in Children’s Room during reading sessions.
Each time slot is 30 minutes long. Each child may only sign-up once per session. Only three children per time slot. This program is not meant to be a tutoring session. Questions? Email email@example.com, call (781) 721-7171 x326, or visit the Children's Room for more information.
We started out this month's workshop with the question, "What type of mechanical element links the three videos below?"
The answer is "cams/camshafts/crankshafts."
The first video is of a "Strandbeest," the creation of Dutch inventor and artist Theo Jansen. There's a good shot of the crankshaft driving the contraption at the 20 second mark. I also brought in a working scale model of a Strandbeest so the kids could get a close-up look at one.
Cam mechanisms are important to this workshop because they are what move the arms of our Drumming Monkey. We explored how varying the placement of the cams on the spinning shaft would change the rhythm of the drumming. We also experimented with lengthening the monkey's arms. Finally, we began to try some more advanced programming using motion sensors to trigger our models.
We'll be covering this last subject in more depth during our March workshop. See you then!