Wednesday, December 9, 2009

One month until FIRST Robotics kick-off.

One month until FIRST Robotics kick-off.
One month.

This will be my second year doing this. Last  year I came in late, perhaps a month before kick-off. If you did not read my posts regarding FIRST last year, go back and have a look. 

This program is problem based learning (PBL) at its best. At the kick-off all teams are given information about what their robots need to do, and are given a parts kit, they then have six weeks to design, build and test the robot, a short time. I should say this stuff is really not given to the teams, there are many costs involved, this money issue is really another type of PBL for the students to learn. 

I have learned about this money raising issue during the "off season" of robotics. For a few years the team has had a major corporate sponsor. The sponsor paid for most expenses. With the way things are now, the funding has been cut down by a fair amount. Due to this we need to raise money, and so is every other organization. The competition for these few dollars has become fierce. Chicken BBQ, Bottle and Can drives, Pumpkin Chunkin, golf tournament, and just about anything else you can think of. Hard for parents, as we buy and help with all of these things, but if we want the kids to be able to do this, we work on it. 

The problem of raising money. A real world problem. An ugly problem. Businesses are tapped out at this time of year, the local businesses that try to give to everything in the community are feeling a squeeze. I sent out feelers to several businesses which I work with, and have only one interested, but so it goes. 

Anyone out there want to donate money to the team?

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