Home Store Project Ideas Project Guide Ask An Expert Blog Careers Teachers Parents Students
Grade Range
3rd-5th
Group Size
1-2 students
Active Time
60 minutes
Total Time
60 minutes
Area of Science
Robotics
Key Concepts
Electricity, circuits, energy, engineering
Learning Objectives
  • Apply the engineering design process to iteratively test and improve a robot.
  • Understand the difference between open, closed, and short circuits.
vibrobots image

Overview

Vibrobots are tiny robots powered by a vibrating motor, like the type found in cell phones. In this lesson plan, your students will learn about engineering design as they build their own vibrobots from craft materials. No previous experience with robots is required!

NGSS Alignment

This lesson helps students prepare for these Next Generation Science Standards Performance Expectations:
  • 3-5-ETS1-2. Generate and compare multiple possible solutions to a problem based on how well each is likely to meet the criteria and constraints of the problem.
This lesson focuses on these aspects of NGSS Three Dimensional Learning:

Science & Engineering Practices Disciplinary Core Ideas Crosscutting Concepts
Constructing Explanations and Designing Solutions. Generate and compare multiple solutions to a problem based on how well they meet the criteria and constraints of the design problem.
ETS1.B: Developing Possible Solutions. At whatever stage, communicating with peers about proposed solutions is an important part of the design process, and shared ideas can lead to improved designs.
Systems and System Models. A system is a group of related parts that make up a whole and can carry out functions its individual parts cannot.

Credits

Ben Finio, PhD, Science Buddies

Materials


bristlebot vibrobot materials
  • For each student or small group of students building a robot, you will need these items from the Bristlebot Kit (also available as a Classroom Kit specially priced for teachers):
    • Vibration motor (1)
    • Coin cell battery (1)
    • Note: Kits are sold through our partner Jameco Electronics. Each kit contains enough parts for two vibrobots, as well as two Junkbots.
  • For the entire class, you will need assorted craft materials, such as:
    • Cardboard
    • Styrofoam®
    • Construction paper
    • Toothpicks
    • Popsicle sticks
    • Pipe cleaners
    • Straws
    • Bottle caps
    • Paper clips
    • Googly eyes
    • Scissors
    • Tape

Reviews

|
Was this review helpful?
Be the first one to review this activity.
Grade Range
3rd-5th
Group Size
1-2 students
Active Time
60 minutes
Total Time
60 minutes
Area of Science
Robotics
Key Concepts
Electricity, circuits, energy, engineering
Learning Objectives
  • Apply the engineering design process to iteratively test and improve a robot.
  • Understand the difference between open, closed, and short circuits.

Class Materials