Exploring Robotics with Electronics Boe Bot Activities

Each lesson correlates to one chapter in the book and contains videos, hands-on activities to build and program the robot, interactive 3D drawings of the robot assembly, a worksheet (Word Doc), a reading assignment, and a quiz . The interactive 3D drawings allow students to check their circuit board assembly step by step and troubleshoot any issues.   Objectives for each lesson are in italics below.  


Electronics Activities Outline 


Demonstrate team building skills by participating in a robotics team.

Chapter 1: Your Boe-Bot’s Brain

Demonstrate problem solving by setting up software and taking inventory of robot hardware components.

Identify the microcontroller used with this robot 

Explain what a breadboard is and demonstrate how to use it.

Install microcontroller chip and apply DC power to microcontroller board.

Identify and use help resources for the programming language.

Demonstrate creating, saving, and running a Basic program.

    • Activity #1 : Getting the Software
    • Activity #2 : Using the Help File for Hardware Setup

Chapter 2: Your Boe-Bot’s Servo Motors 

Demonstrate ability to read schematic diagrams.

Construct circuits with LEDs and Resistors.

Install motor horns, calibrate, and center robot servo motors.

Explain how speed and direction are controlled for continuous rotation servos

Generate a program to send pulses to the servo motor

Identify a resistor by its colored coded stripes 

Calculate duration and time to run servos using math formulas to travel a known distance

    • Activity #1 : Building and Testing the LED Circuit
    • Activity #2 : Tracking Time and Repeating Actions with a Circuit
    • Activity #3 : Connecting the Servo Motors
    • Activity #4 : Centering the Servos
    • Activity #5 : How To Store Values and Count
    • Activity #6 : Testing the Servos

Chapter 3: Assemble and Test Your Boe-Bot 


Assemble a robot chassis and mount wheels, battery pack, motors, and control board 

Assemble a circuit connecting the servos and piezo speaker to the controller

Generate a graph of pulse width vs. velocity for servos

    • Activity #1 : Assembling the Boe-Bot Robot
    • Activity #2 : Re-Test the Servos
    • Activity #3 : Start/Reset Indicator Circuit and Program
    • Activity #4 : Testing Speed Control with the Debug Terminal

Chapter 4:  Boe-Bot Navigation

Develop methods to tune robot maneuvers so that they are more precise.

Generate a program to control a robot to perform the basic maneuvers: forward, backward, rotate left, rotate right, and pivoting turns. 

Generate a program that corrects the robot when it veers to the left or right.

Operate robot to speed up gradually 

Generate a program with subroutines and variables to control movement of robot

Calculate the number of pulses needed to make the robot travel a predetermined distance

    • Activity #1 : Basic Boe-Bot Maneuvers
    • Activity #2 : Tuning the Basic Maneuvers
    • Activity #3 : Calculating Distances
    • Activity #4 : Maneuvers—Ramping
    • Activity #5 : Simplify Navigation with Subroutines
    • Activity #6 : Advanced Topic—Building Complex Maneuvers in EEPROM


Chapter 5: Tactile Navigation with Whiskers

Install tactile switches on the robot and test their operation. 

Generate a program for the robot to monitor the state of the switches, and decide what to do when it encounters an obstacle.

Operate a robot with autonomous navigation using sensors. 

      • Activity #1 : Building and Testing the Whiskers
      • Activity #2 : Field Testing the Whiskers
      • Activity #3 : Navigation with Whiskers
      • Activity #4 : Artificial Intelligence and Deciding When You’re Stuck

    Chapter 6: Light-Sensitive Navigation with Phototransistors  

     Build and test a circuit for robot to detect light with sensors.

    Generate a program for robot to measure light levels with phototransistors. 

    Explain Ohms law and use it to calculate resistance, current, and voltage.

    Generate a program for robot to use light to control its behavior while roaming.

    Operate robot autonomously using light while roaming.

    Generate a program for robot to create a graphic display of the light level detected. 

      • Activity #1 : A Simple Binary Light Sensor
      • Activity #2 : Measure Light Levels with Phototransistors
      • Activity #3 : Light Sensitivity Adjustment
      • Activity #4 : Light Measurements for Roaming
      • Activity #5 : Routine for Roaming Toward Light
      • Activity #6 : Test Navigation Routine with the Boe-Bot

    Chapter 7: Navigating with Infrared Headlights 

    Mount InfraRed sensors on robot and troubleshoot operation

    Build an IR object detection circuit with IR LEDs for the robot 

    Generate a program for robot to use the IR detection circuit for object detection

    Generate a program for robot to use the IR detection circuit for object avoidance 

     Modify the object detection circuit to adjust the range detection of the IR sensor 

    Operate the robot autonomously with IR sensors avoiding obstacles 


      • Activity #1 : Building and Testing the IR Object Detectors
      • Activity #2 : Field Testing for Object Detection and Infrared Interference
      • Activity #3 : Infrared Detection Range Adjustments
      • Activity #4 : Object Detection and Avoidance
      • Activity #5 : High-Performance IR Navigation
      • Activity #6 : The Drop-Off Detector

Chapter 8: Robot Control with Distance Detection

Build a test course for robot to follow a black stripe 

Generate a Program for robot to shadow (follow) another vehicle or a person

Generate a Program for robot to follow a stripe

Operate robot to follow a black stripe

      • Activity #1 : Testing the Frequency Sweep
      • Activity #2 : Boe-Bot Shadow Vehicle
      • Activity #3 : Following a Stripe
      • Activity #4 : More Boe-Bot Activities and Projects Online

More about this curriculum.



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