What can robots do? Spark excitement about engineering


January 19, 2011

The capabilities of robots have increased dramatically in recent decades. Advances in robotics have made the machines essential to modern manufacturing, space travel, transportation, security systems, communications and more – even housecleaning.

Robots are also being proven especially useful in performing another important feat: getting young students interested in science, engineering and mathematics. Download Full Image

That’s demonstrated each year when the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering at Arizona State University organize and host a statewide robotics competition for Arizona middle school students.

As many as 400 youngsters ages 9 to 14 come to ASU’s Tempe campus to participate in a state championship tournament in early December. There they demonstrate the capabilities of robots they’ve designed, programmed and built using LEGO MINDSTORMS robotics kits.

Schools from throughout Arizona begin registering teams in May for each year’s FIRST">http://azfll.asu.edu">FIRST LEGO League season of competitive events.

For more information, contact ASU K-12 outreach coordinator Patty Smith at Pfsmith4@asu.edu

The Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering also offer robotics">http://engineering.asu.edu/roboticscamp/">robotics summer camps for middle school and high school students, as well as a camp for teachers who teach middle school and high school computer science courses or coach school robotics clubs.

The camp is directed by Yinong Chen, a lecturer in the School of Computing, Informatics, and Decision Systems Engineering.

Chen’s knowledge of robotics is highlighted in the article ">http://www.bearessentialnews.com/feature-stories.php">“The nuts and bolts (and sensors) of robots” in Bear">http://www.bearessentialnews.com/about-bear-essential.php">Bear Essential News For Kids, an Arizona publication designed to encourage children to develop their skills and creativity.

Joe Kullman

Science writer, Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering

480-965-8122

Chinese dance troupe rings in new year with Sichuan's ethnic dances


January 19, 2011

Sichuan University’s Chinese Folk Music and Dance Celebration will be held on Jan. 21 and Jan. 22 at Arizona State University and at Rhodes Junior High.

The performances will feature various Chinese ethnic dances and music, particularly the dances and music of Sichuan’s Yi minority group. Download Full Image

The opening acts will also celebrate Chinese New Year, which is based on the lunar calendar. The first performance will be on the Hayden Lawn at 11:30 a.m. on Jan. 21. The second and third performances will be held on Jan. 22 at Rhodes Junior High, 1860 S. Longmore in Mesa. The second performance will be at 3 p.m. and the third performance will be at 7 p.m.

Arizona State University’s Confucius Institute in the School of International Letters and Cultures is sponsoring the two performances.

Contact the Confucius Institute at fannie.tam">mailto:fannie.tam@asu.edu">fannie.tam@asu.edu or (480) 965-7179 with any questions.

Irene Hsiao
The ASU Chinese Language Flagship Program
Communications Specialist
(480) 727-0879