Robotics is a team activity. Being part of a team brings with it rewards and responsibilities. Doing an Internet search of What is teamwork? Brings almost 60 million hits with the majority of the articles concerning the workplace. Then do a search of How to teach teamwork. The first three hits on the day I did it were from M.I.T., Berkeley and Colorado State. These universities are concerned about their graduates having good team skills to use in the workplace. This is why being on a FIRST team enhances scholarship, college and job applications.
Steve and I are both concerned about the robotics program at OHS not exemplifying the teamwork concept. We are concerned about a lack of communication and dedication. In an effort to make robotics available to all we have created a situation of little buy in. In the past we have always had a core group of students showing up for practice consistently. This core group was able to assimilate the other students’ erratic attendance. This year we are missing our core group. This is more of a problem for the Sock Monkeys than the Ninjaneers, as they are an older group with more responsibilities and activities. They also have a large portion of their members participating in marching band. Band is a huge time and physical commitment and we applaud their dedication to it.
Our first League competition will probably be November 14th. Good news is our league does not go to Corning this year. The league championship will be at Ottumwa on February 6th. Other members of our league are Knoxville, Indianola, Newton, Pella, Melcher-Dallas, Bondurant and Ottumwa.
We would like parents and students to brain storm this bump in the road we are having. Perhaps practices should be at a different time? Should we change our philosophy of embracing all students? Longer practices so band students could join us? Supper provided practices? The Ninjaneers are currently practicing Tuesday and Thursday from 3:45 to 5:00 with the Sock Monkeys meeting Monday, Wednesday and Friday. I would like to have the Ninjaneers meet another day but I am not available on Wednesday until 3:30.
If you have not joined our Celly yet please do. Ninjaneers is @Robitcs3608 and Sock Monkeys is @SockMonkeys. An account at Celly is free and easy to use. Members must be approved by either Steve or I so email us if we do not approve you. firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com. The member list is private, the messages are curated (Steve and I have to approve each message before it is sent to all members) and archived (the messages are all saved for inspection).
Sign up on the Robotics Blog page for this Friday's (Oct. 2) concession stand fundraiser.