To celebrate National Science Week we ran some robotics activities in the library each lunchtime. In our MakerSpace we have a number of different robots which we set up and used. Students manoeuvered the Lego EV3 robot and attempted to get it to shoot its missiles at a target. The Sphero and Sprk robots both had to be manipulated through a maze using an iPad or iPhone. We had long lines of students waiting to use the robots and even some of the staff came down to give it a try. We also set up a display on robots, highlighting some of our fiction and non-fiction titles.
The library staff set up a stall at our Junior School’s Science Fair yesterday. We had a reading corner with bean bags and a few high-interest science books but the main attraction was our “Augmented Reality Alley”. We borrowed two of the Oculus Rift headsets from the IT department and set them up on laptops to run a virtual reality program called Ocean Rift, which took the kids underwater to spot sharks, whales and dolphins. It was a huge hit, with kids, parents and staff lining up to have a go. We also had a number of iPads which we’d loaded some augmented reality apps on. We printed out the trigger images and kids scanned the images to make the augmented reality layer appear. Chelsea Wright’s article in Connections issue 94, 2015, gave some great suggestions for AR apps to try. The kids loved the Guinness World Record apps and Animal 4D. These made animals come to life, sharks and dinosaurs jump out of the pages and the solar system swirl before them. The teachers were impressed by Elements 4D and Anatomy 4D, which allowed students to examine the human heart and explore the chemical elements. Even the principal came over to have a look and we took her through all the apps and she left very impressed.