We Now Have A Booster Club

Some of our current and past parents have gotten together with Walt Whitman High School and started a Booster Club. Team 1389 Whitman Robotics Boosters, Inc. will be a non-profit entity that will help the team with fundraising, organizing and long term planning.  This is great news for the team on the fundraising front as this will open doors to the team to be able to apply for grants that it has historically not been able to apply for and target businesses that support non-profits.

As we have, the team will remain as a club at Whitman, this will not have any impact on our status as a club at the school.  The team will continue to act as it always has, this is only a change in the business operation to maximize our fundraising potential.

We will be submitting our 501C3 paperwork in the coming weeks and will work hard over the next 5 years to earn our accreditation from the IRS.  In that time we will be able to everything a 501C3 does.

 

The board consists of

Farish Perlman, team coordinator – Board President

JJ Biel -Goebel , lead mentor – Board Vice President

William Prinz, parent of Team 1389 alum – Treasurer

Elizabeth Williams, parent of current Team 1389 student – Secretary

Dan Chen, Walt Whitman teacher – member

Alan Goodwin, Walt Whitman principal – Ex-offico

Elizabeth Hillard, Walt Whitman Business Administrator – Ex-offico

 

Team 1389 and the new Board look forward to continued growth of the team.

If you have some time and want to help out we would love to hear from you.

FRC Kick Off

Kickoff is coming! Saturday, January 7th, our team, along with many others in the DC metro area, will converge on STEMAction to watch the live reveal of the 2017 challenge. The hint was released and the students have been talking about what they think that this years challenge might involve. A flying robot? Maybe not this year. The team will meet at 8:00 am on 1/7/17 drive to Columbia for the reveal and then return to Walt Whitman High School for the afternoon of planning. Beginning Monday, January 9th, prototyping will be going in full force. We will be closing down our lab next week to give both students and mentors a break and to enjoy the Holiday Season before Build Season. The team is getting excited and ready for kickoff!

 

Clubs Night and Teaser Release Next Week

Next Tuesday from 7-9 Walt Whitman High School will be hosting its annual Clubs night and the Body Electric will be there full force to help gets kids excited about STEM sports.  On top of that FIRST is releasing its 2017 teaser video at 7 pm.

 

Walt Whitman Clubs Night

Last year over 90 Walt Whitman High School students signed our interest form, it was by far our best year ever.  This year we want to break 100 and will need everyone’s help to drum up interest in robotics.

  • Students – come check take our robots for a spin
  • Parents – come learn how 100% of STEM athletes go pro
  • Teachers – come check out how students are using what you teach them

 

The 2017 FRC Teaser

You remember the teaser from last year? Well, we’re doing it again! The 2017 Season Teaser will be released at 7PM Eastern Time on Tuesday, September 20th. So, set those calendar reminders (and for some of you, those alarm clocks) and keep an eye on the FIRST Facebook page. And once that teaser comes out, remember to share, share, share!

The teaser release, and the aftershow below, seem like they could be excellent excuses to get the team together to have a little party, watch, and get everyone excited for the upcoming season. Start planning for those fried pickle chips now!

 

Downloadable Content (DLC) Pack 1

Simultaneously with the release of the teaser, we will be releasing a set of digital goodies related to the upcoming season in the form of a DLC pack. You will be able to download the pack on the landing page for the teaser, the web address for which we will be publishing when the teaser is released.

I think there’s a good chance you’ll find the content interesting, useful, and maybe even fun. Just like the DLC packs available for many videogames, this is intended to enhance your experience. Unlike the DLC packs available for many videogames, however, this will be free! And, as our use of a pack number suggests, we will be releasing more of these over time.

 

Teaser Aftershow

After the 2017 Season Teaser and DLC Pack 1 are released, be sure to join the FIRST Robotics Competition community and our friends from the GameSense crew for the Teaser Aftershow! The show starts at 7:30PM Eastern Time and you can find out how to watch and participate here. Join the GameSense crew and special guests for a fun and lively discussion as they dissect what they saw and heard (or what they think they saw and heard), along with what it all means*.

One special guest currently scheduled to participate is FIRST Friend Emma Dumont. Emma is an FRC Alumna, current FRC Mentor, actress, dancer, model, violinist and roller derby player**. With her broad range of talents and passions, her perspective on the teaser is sure to be interesting.

This will be a show not to miss!

PAPERWORK IS DUE TODAY!!!

Have you turned it in?

Have you signed up for leadership?

Have you signed up for off seasons?

Paperwork is due this week

Paper work

Paperwork is due Friday September 9th for returning students and students who want to attend the Battle O’Baltimore in two weekends.

Paper work is due Friday October 2nd for all remaining students.

If you have issues with getting your paperwork in please send a message to admin@team1389.com

Want to learn more about what we are going to be doing this season, check out this video

RoboLeague from Digital Kitchen on Vimeo.

 

If you are interested in taking on any leadership positions please fill in this form before the 9th https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSd4COdtPY9TNGsoRDDYTh45xmsxEhMEmteotJSdgxnZMZUFEQ/viewform

Looking for a few good mentors

Are you a maker or a doer living near Bethesda Maryland.  We need people that have knowledge in the following;

  • Java and or C++ coding
  • Computer vision
  • Control system design
  • Location systems design
  • Pneumatic systems
  • Web design
  • Tech writing
  • Graphics design
  • Fund raising
  • Video production
  • Animation
  • Journalism
  • Public relations

If you are interested or know someone who could, please email us at admin@team1389.com

 

 

What is a FIRST Mentor?

Walt Whitman Robotics Club mentors work with students from Walt Whitman high schools The mission of the mentoring program is to help develop the skills students need to make good life choices and to succeed personally and professionally through a program that both provides practical guidance on preparing for college and that develops strong, long term relationships and bonds of trust with mentors.

 

Why Mentor?

In this Video Participants from the Million Women Mentors Program talks about how a influential a STEM mentored activity can be for students.

 

How does mentoring make a difference?

As a Walt Whitman Robotics Club mentor, you’ll have the unique opportunity to positively influence the lives of students through personal growth, interpersonal development, and community involvement.

 

Click here to see the amazing people that have already signed up to make the next generation of students a little smarter

If you are interested or know someone who could, please email us at admin@team1389.com

 

 

Welcome back Robotics Families!

I hope that everyone had a wonderful summer and I cannot believe that the
start of school is only days away..

Robotics is going to get started and there are many events that the team
has coming up, before build season begins.

There will be more information to come, but for now, please find the
attached paperwork that must be completed before any student can
participate with the team (this includes working in the lab or being able
to attend events).

The attachments include;

welcome letter
member sign-up form
student/parent contract
medical liability waiver
emergency medical card
checklist

All forms must be returned *no later* than Friday, September 9th (details
are in the attached welcome letter).

If you have any questions, please let me know.

There will be another email forthcoming with opportunities for
volunteering!

We look forward to a great year!

Best!

Farish Perlman
Team 1389
Team Coordinator

Time to Register for Robotics

Are you going to be on the Walt Whitman Robotics team starting Fall 2016?  If you are, please start your registration now.   To register, go to www.firstinspires.org and log in or register a new account and then sign up for FRC team 1389.

FIRST has opened up student registration early this year and we are encouraging students / parents to take advantage of this opportunity to avoid some paperwork in the fall.   This is open to all returning and new students.

Kickoff is

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This Saturday the team is having a robot party

Parents, volunteers, sponsors, community members, school leaders and students come out this Saturday at 6pm to our team’s end of the year banquet. Please email us for location admin@team1389.com.

robot-30

Also, our students will be meeting from 2-5 pm at the robotics room to plan out the next season.  If you want to be on the leadership team or want a say in what the team is going to do next season you should probably show up.

The 2016-2017 goals

Yesterday, the team met to discuss last season and start to make plans for how we step up our game for next season. We had lots of great observations and lessons learned and many great ideas. First, the team reviewed the 2015-2016 goals to see how well we did meeting them;

  • Lab organization
    • Did better than last year till the snow storm, than we did the same
    • We need new system that is
      • lazy proof
      • easy to understand / well labeled
      • easy able to get in and out of robotics room
    • Students need more self discipline
      • individual tool kits might be a good idea
      • using a tool chit system combined with tool boxes that are shadowed
  • Win regional and go to worlds!
    • We did better, still have more work todo
    • We did make it to worlds, but we want to earn it next year
  • Team 1/4 girls
    • The team felt we achieved 50% of this goal
    • We did
      • Increase the number of girls on the team
      • Increase the number of girls on the core team
      • Marginalized some of the girls by not including them in critical decisions
      • Selected a girl for the drive team
    • We did not
      • Get enough girls in leadership
      • Keep girls involved on the technical side as much as we should have
    • Things we should change
      • Get more girls involved in leadership
      • Ensure the team has a minimum of 8 girls
      • Make sure girls are part of every critical decision
  • Finish robot earlier in build season
    • The team really missed the mark on this one
    • The programmers never really had enough time with the robot
    • Here are some ideas on how to do this better next year
      • Need to do more prototyping
      • Need to get more people involved in CAD
      • Need to have work well defined
      • Need to have a snow day plan
      • Build a second robot
  • Score autonomous points
    • We did really well here
    • We can do better by getting all of the auton points on a consistent basis next year
  • Fundraising more
    • The team missed the $68,000 goal
    • The team raised nearly $40,000 this year
    • Next season
      • Need to increase fund raising
      • Make fund raising mandatory
      • Do more earlier
  • Outreach
    • Team improved here
    • Team needs to do more here
    • team needs a chairman’s plan that goes out 5 years so that out reach efforts can be coordinated
  • 2-4k for last season’s cost
    • Team raised $1,000 to cover the 2014-2015 cost overrun
    • The cost overruns from this year are also an issue
    • Team needs a budget for next season
    • Team needs to spend per the budget
  • Hold mock build seasons this summer and fall
    • Team partially completed this
    • Team needs to do this for next season

 

Next, we went over what went well this season, what did not go well this season and what we need to change for next season;

  • What went well
    • We went to worlds
    • Did a better job scouting
    • Built a turret (mostly)
    • Worked well together
    • Fixed flaws in design
    • Alright driving
    • Pretty organized code
    • Fastener standardization
    • Auton points
    • Task pairing for assignments
    • Hosted a competition
    • Strong fund raising when we made an effort
    • New mentors
    • Better leadership structure
    • Most complex robot ever
    • Tech phone calls during snow
    • Cheering at Walt Whitman Event
    • Using crate as pit at worlds
  • What did not go well
    • How we used belts
    • Project hand offs
    • Leadership structure still to lose
    • Not enough depth in some system teams
    • Need better document team decision making process
    • Not enough inclusion
    • To many design flaws
    • Not enough prototyping
    • Building field elements took to long
    • Bumpers
    • Didn’t finish on time
    • Snow plan did not work
    • Tool standardization
    • Organization
      • wasted a lot of time looking for things
      • lost things
    • Sharing knowledge
    • Sharing responsibility
    • Picking leaders
    • Including human player in decision making
    • Control station
    • Controllers
    • Cheering at Dist Champs and Worlds
    • Pre event scouting
    • Better pit design
    • No real safety stuff this season
  • Things to do better, differently next season
    • Involve freshman more
    • Agile development
    • Use backlog and Scrum board with stickies
    • Quick attach bumpers
    • Single piece bumpers
    • Get done on schedule in week 4 with test bot
    • Keep more people involved
    • Drive team does only drive team
    • Uniform organization for all code
    • Team leads delegate more responsibility
    • Team leads make sure everyone on team has work
    • Include more girls in descisions
    • Include more girls in leadership
    • Include more girls on each sub team
    • Do a better job choosing the right fastener
    • Create more trust within team and sub teams
    • Make sure each sub team has a first, second and third in command
    • Sub team leads need to make sure they are always on the same page
    • Keep and formalize work pairing
    • Pair up new team members with seniors
    • Make sure new people come to off seasons
    • Learn how to do machining
    • Make sure drive team members commit to scheduled and possible events
    • Pick drive team in the fall
    • Do a better job picking drive team
    • Pick team leads in May
    • Copy how the stage crew picks their people
    • Communicate changes in control systems better
    • Better control system labeling
    • Do a better job of creating an inclusive environment for everyone
    • Stress that stepping in / over people is not how we operate
    • Stress that saying nothing or not asking also send a message to people
    • Need to cheer louder
    • More stagey feedback to drivers from scout team
    • More involvement in scouting
    • Setting up two lead position in scouting, one in the pit and one in the stands who talk to each other, the scout in the pits accompanies drive team on strategy discussions.
    • Better pre event scouting
    • Pre event pick lists
    • Include more cameras in base design
    • Create better drive station that includes input from multiple cameras
    • Write awards in fall
    • Create an awards strategy in May
    • Set awards goals for the team for next season
    • Use pnuematics
    • Better pit design for pit team and awards team
    • Improve safety
    • Maintain tools better

After that the team discussed the FIRST national Advocacy conference. The team is planning on taking 3 students and is looking for volunteers to attend the June 19th to 21st. Each slot will cost the team $260 so those who would like to go should try and do some fund raising before the end of the school year. Here is a list of all of the advocacy work we have scheduled for the summer. We encourage any robotics team or program to join us if you are interested.

  • MD Federal representatives June 19-22
    • Part of FRC Team 27 National Advocacy Conference
  • Mo Co county – July 18th
    • County Board
    • County Executive
    • County School Board
    • County Dept. of Health & Human Services
    • County Dept. of Economic Development
  • Mo Co State representative – August 8th
  • MD Dept. of education – August 15th
  • MD Governor – August 15th

 

Next we talked about the team banquet. it is being held the evening of May 21st. More details to come. Please be sure to tell your parents, any sponsors, school officials who helped and any and all volunteers that made this season possible.

 

We moved on to talking about our seniors. We really want to know where everyone is going and what their major’s are. We also want to think of some way of recognizing our seniors before they leave the program. Lastly we want to collect some data that the team can use to win awards in the future.

 

Next we talked about all of the to do items in May. This list is critical as we get ready to end the school year and make next season more successful.

  • Set up time in lab – Ari
  • Set up a fund raiser – Micaela
  • pick new team leads – JJ & Natalie
  • Plan banquet – Parents
  • Set up a drive day at Walt Whitman so that anyone on the team can drive Maelstrom – Floris
  • Set up drive day at Pyle so that incoming freshman get a chance to drive – ??
  • Set up robot demos – Joey
  • Clean up lab and robot room – Sebastian and Theo
  • Invite sponsors to banquet – ??
  • Make senior gifts – Micaela
  • Find space for summer – Ari and Jonah
  • Make Liftzilla and Maelstrom completely functional for summer demos
  • Get robots, tower and drive station to United Therapeutics before school closes

 

Lastly, and most importantly we set the goals for the 2016-2017 season

  • Raise $50,000, create a budget and be within 10% of the budget
  • Create a larger and more diver core group with a minimum of 4 people on each sub team
  • Ensure that leadership team and that each sub team has at least one female
  • Win district and district championship
  • Have 3 major impacts on the community
  • Transfer knowledge to more incoming students

 

The team will meet again in the 21st to create the plans to make these goals a reality. Here is the agenda for that meeting;

 

  • Agenda items for the 21st
    • 2016 summer plans
      • starting teams
        • FTC
        • FLL
    • 2016 fall plans
      • Off seasons
        • Battle O’Baltimore – Sept ?? 2016, Baltimore, MD.
        • Girl power – Oct ?? 2016, Flourtown, PA.
        • Rumble in the roads – Nov 5 2016, Newport News, VA
      • training
      • fund raising
    • 2017 spring plans
    • picking team leaders
    • picking drive team
    • lab cleanup
    • Communication tools
    • respect
  • Lab Cleanup May 23rd, 25th and 27th

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