Robotics courses with Zebra involves Coding as well, but robotics is a combination of building mechanical attachments and coding the robot to complete a specific mission. Where as Coding courses focus on language fundamentals and dives deeper into Coding concepts such as recursion, object-oriented programming etc. We have seen our students weave between Coding and Robotics courses over years and we see both programs complementing each other.
Robotics involves mechanical aspect, as it is a physical object. But Robotics in the past has meant ‘automation’ for manufacturing or other industrial application. Our focus is on ‘autonomous’ aspect, which requires intense programming as students advance to higher level of robotics. For example, getting a robot to go straight, is not as simple as it sounds. There are so many variants – it could be that the tires on wheels are not evenly worn-out, or the motors are not in sync, or the surface that robot runs may be slightly inclined. Now, we want our students to apply programming concepts to assist robot to overcome these challenges.
Many people assume direct co-relation between Robotics and Coding with technology related career or higher education, that is not entirely correct. Some of the soft skills such as trouble shooting, logical reasoning, persistence, team work and research are the ones that are applicable to any field- be it legal, medicine, finance or public service. Knowing how to program can help converse or automate some of their tasks irrespective of the field of work. If students choose to specialize in technology field, they have a leg up when they go to universities, as they have reasonably good knowledge about Coding and Robotics.
If students decide to pursue engineering, several opportunities are open to them. They can specialize in Computer Science, Mechanical, Electronics, Electrical, Mechatronics engineering etc. Robotics is a multi- disciplinary field, with professors from multiple departments teaching different subjects.
We have courses from Grade 2 to 12 and beyond. It is up to the student’s interest. Having taught about 2000 students so far, we have seen kids who are with us for over 5 years. They tend to weave between robotics, coding courses and competitions. As they advance they learn increasingly complex concepts be it in design, or programming.
Our curriculum has all been built by us, right-to-left focusing on teaching kids concepts to complete a specific project. They continue to learn different concepts as the project demands. We have iteratively curated our curriculum over the last 5 years and are constantly maintained by our experienced coaches.
We do not promote homework as we want students to go out and socialize, but kids can bring their laptop for coding and continue to work on some of the challenges that they are not able to complete in the class. The reason is that we have found that sometimes kids brute force and solve a challenge without necessarily understanding the concepts.
They come from diverse technical background – from computer science, aerospace engineering, electronics & communication and machine learning. We all have one thing in common that is passion to teach and learn continuously.