Kids get up close and personal with robots at 'Go, go gadgets' camp

A robot races around the room at the "Go, go gadget" camp at Indian Hills.

Summer at Indian Hills Community College is all about kids learning and having fun.

A Go-Go Gadget Camp at Indian Hills Tuesday got kids up close and personal with robots, computer programming and electronics. Groups had to construct their robots from Lego kits and were awarded based on the accuracy of the robot's movements.

"The hardest part is making it turn," said camper Jackson. "Because sometimes it goes in circles."

"It's really hard, but it's fun too," added Aaliyah.

These kids may only be in fourth, fifth and sixth grade, but instructor Jeff Henderson said that's the perfect age to get them involved with technology.

"Normally what we've found out is that fourth through sixth grade gives them an opportunity when they're really interested in everything to get an idea if that's something they'd like to do later on in life," Henderson said. "So it's the perfect time so they can start making decisions down through junior high and high school."

Henderson said the kids typically like building more than programming the robots, but it's an all-around fun experience.

"Building and controlling it is my favorite part," said Cody.

"We had to go to the computer and program them to drive in a certain way," said Kameron.

"It was a lot of just going back and forth and pushing one simple button and then seeing if it would work and then you would go back and forth again," added Jacob.

For many of the campers, Tuesday was their first experience working with robots, but they'll walk away taking a lot of knowledge with them.

"I just learned how to do all this today," said Andrew.

"The most fun part is you get to get on the computer, it's kind of like playing a video game, but with an actual robot," said camper Libbey. "And since robots are getting really popular, we actually get to make one of our own. It's really cool."

Later in the afternoon, the kids got to try their hand at computer and electronic programming.

"I would recommend coming," said Blakelyn. "My favorite part was building the robot and just having fun with the computers."

For a full list of summer camps at Indian Hills, click here.