The Pro-Bot available at https://www.terrapinlogo.com/robots.html is a wonderful tool for grades 3-8. It takes most standard felt pens/markers, and can be used to draw as well as detect sound, light and touch front/back using its sensors.
The Pro-Bot can be used to teach powerful concepts in geometry and coding using the Logo programming language. This simple tool can be used to teach the use of sensors in robotics, as well as the use of sub-procedures.
Pro-Bot is the ‘big brother’ of the Bee-Bot and the perfect next step in any K-8 Computer science / STEM classroom.
It defaults to the Bee-Bot instructions when no numbers/angles are entered.
without any numbers, moves same as Bee-Bot : approx 6 inches / 15 cm
RT or LT without any numbers, turns 90 degrees
In addition it has a REPEAT command ,
Enter RPT [, the number of times to repeat , the instructions to repeat and end with a close }
RPT 4 [ FD RT ] : draws a square
RPT 6 [ FD 5 RT 60 ] : draws a hexagon
128 commands, shows 15 at a time. But each command can be a call to a sub-procedure, which can also be 128 commands.
HOLD DOWN MENU : get to Special commands. Here are the useful ones:
Sound 3 : car horn
Important to first be in position to enter the command, and then hold down MENU to get to this menu to access these commands
MENU : allow you to
- configure units,
- Sensors - turn on and off (off position saves battery)
- do SUB- PROCEDURES : Use either Edit or New Proc
- CLEAR : clears all code.
Special Procedures for SENSORS
(Works with sharp clap only during a pause )
Care of the Pro-Bot
Configuration : set units, sensors disable- else uses more battery
Maintenance : battery, watch battery may need to be changes.
Pro-Bot can be configured to work with Logo Programming on a Mac or PC, with some drivers installed . See http://doc.terrapinlogo.com/doku.php/logo:programming_probot
Some suggested Pro-Bot programming challenges :
- Make simple letters like L T
- Make a square without using repeat
- Make a square, a triangle, a pentagon using repeat
- Make your initials
- Make a house
- Make any other shape/drawing - students pick challenges from a stack of cards
- Go a specific distance at a specific angle to touch something (e.g. knock over a standing marker)
- Go to a specific target and hit just the marker, and not hit anything else.(require using back, and more careful measurement of distance and angles)
- Navigate to a destination and go around obstacles that appear suddenly (e.g. if it bumps into something, backs out and turns and goes around it)
- Goes into a tunnel - stops, sounds the horn, turns on lights, backs out, and makes a complete turn around.
- During the movement, there are some pauses. While it is paused, if it hears a clap, it makes a small square at that place.
- If it hits something behind, it sounds the horn, flashes lights on/off and moves away
Some good resources
Some good examples in the classroom on this story on the Pro-Bot website:
Video tutorial by 2 young students: