Te Matatini – 24th February 2017

  • Small numbers (5) due to Te Matatini participation so didn’t run with the planned programme for the day as it would have been unfair. I started off the day by taking the students to the library and having their photos taken and ID cards printed.
  • Students then proceeded to access their WordPress blog sites and started to familiarise themselves with their dashboard and tools. Some students changed their background and started their blog, while others experimented with some html and styling.
  • The students were reminded about finishing and uploading their robotics assignment as they were now overdue.
  • In the afternoon, I took the students to the computer technicians room and we examined the computers that were donated for student use by TDH.  We then removed the ram out of one machine and installed it into the spare slots of the other and we managed (with a little modification) to install a second hard drive using parts from the donor pc.  The students then installed a copy of Ubuntu onto the master drive. The students were able to take these home which they seemed very happy about.


The students really seemed to enjoy the combination of hands on (kinaesthetic) and software relating to the computer that they built up. This leads me to believe that they will really enjoy the rest of the programme with the robotics challenge and 3D printing, which both entail a hands on approach with programming and design included.

Robotics – 17th February 2017

Presentation on the field of Robotics.

  • Fleshed out from students what they knew about robotics & industrial usage. Wrote up prior knowledge on whiteboard.
  • Used a contextulised Vex PowerPoint as a presentation. Great discussion ensued with some excellent points brought up about the security of data when robots are used in a possible life threatening situation.
  • Played videos of different robots – Moodle & YouTube
  • Tasked students to research a robot of their choice and present it electronically by the next session. Content to include: Reason, Costs-both designing and end user, Features, Market/Audience, Performance and Ethics.
  • Some students were given their numeracy & literacy assessments to do, while the other students carried on with their research project.
  • Grouped students into their teams. Students came up with team names and allocated job roles and the reason why.

Students worked well, minimal disruptions, all were focused on the task at hand. Will be exciting to see now that they are in teams how they combine their skills for the benefit of the tasks.

Welcome Day – 10th February 2017

A Whakatau was held first off.

Set-up several displays with two being interactive.

  • Eeprom programmer & a digital speedometer. Students had to read the hex off the eeprom, work out the value, modify the table and re-write to the chip to see what difference it made.
  • Arduino Uno with a breadboard attached. Total of nine led’s hooked up. Students could choose three programs to run or modify values in Sketch to witness the outcome.
  • Hexcopter & quadcopter with associated radio gear. Students could also look at a flight controller, brushless gimbal and the radio gear.

Was nice to meet the students, they all seemed really switched on and eager to get started. I’m very much looking forward to working alongside them.

A good start to the first computing & robotics course held at EIT Tairawhiti.