Dual Science/Robotics Proposal – Closed Enrollment Class Prepared for Hanna Rochelle and Rita Nissan Magasiner

Andrew Sabatino is a teacher with 17 years teaching experience at all levels from kindergarten through college-level instruction in math, coding, and robotics.  He has degrees in computer science and electrical engineering and has twice led teams to the NYC regional finals in the First Lego League.

Irina Georgescu is a graduate student at City College focusing on plant science biology.  She has taught classes in AP Biology and AP Chemistry, including classes for homeschoolers.  With Poly Ed she has taught science at the middle and high school levels.

Proposed Course

Tuesdays 1:15–3:25 pm

Students will separate into two groups and conduct the science and robotics classes simultaneously before switching rooms and instructors.  The first period will run from 1:15-2:15 followed by a 15 minute, fully supervised break, followed by the second period from 2:25-3:25.

Robotics students will focus on a team entry in the First Lego League, the largest international middle school robotics competition.  Students will construct and code (in either Scratch or Python) a Lego robot designed to complete tasks and solve obstacles in the 2023 robot games.

FLL has released a trailer for the upcoming season:

The robotics competition will also include 1-3 total competition days to take place on a Friday, Saturday, or Sunday, to  be scheduled in the fall.  Parents will be notified of these days as early as possible.  Please note competition days usually run from 8 am into the late afternoon or early evening.

At the conclusion of the competition season, students will switch to smaller projects using the Arduino microcontroller platform.

The science class will have 2 major focuses:

  1. An experiment-based science curriculum informed by science history.  Students will have modules of study lasting approximately 5-7 class periods.  The first module will focus on cells and microscopy.  Students will have lab notebooks and learn how to take notes on both class instruction and their experiments.  Assessments will be conducted at the conclusion of each module.
  2. The science class will be responsible for preparing the “Innovation Project” section of our FLL entry.  In addition to the robot game, FLL students must complete and present a science or design project in line with the season’s theme.  The designated time in science class will allow the design project to be a major component of the team’s entry, which is necessary for the team to be competitive at the highest level in NYC.