|Frequently Asked Questions...|
Select the questions on the left to view answers.
What is your students-to-instructor ratio? How large are your groups?The student-to-staff ratio in our programs ranges from four to eight students per instructor, depending on the grade level. In most classes, especially for the lower grades, students work in teams of two to learn teamwork. This encourages the students to speak out and discuss their ideas.
Can your program keep an advanced student challenged and engaged?
Absolutely. With our year-round robotics and technology education programs, we facilitate challenges for skill levels ranging from novice to experienced, with the goal of providing technical challenges that will stretch each child's potential. Some of our programs provide advanced engineering and computer science concepts that are challenging even to college engineering students.
Where can I purchase the hardware and software?
If you are interested in buying your own equipment, visit our Roboclub Resource Page.
What do you mean by tailoring talented students?
All of our programs are application/project-based and designed to promote higher-order thinking. Our projects are geared for students who:
What happens when classes are canceled due to inclement weather?
If we need to cancel meetings or classes because of inclement weather:
How do you accomodate students with allergies or other medical issues?To protect students with food allergies, we follow a careful food protocol.
How do Problem-Based Learning and Open-ended Challenges help my child?
Problem-based learning is an approach that challenges students to learn by solving problems. This is one of the best ways to stimulate thinking and also drives understanding. Just as important, it encourages students to take responsibility for their own learning.Open-ended challenges and goal-oriented projects inherently require a PBL approach, which makes learning truly effective. Students constantly exercise lateral thinking, and learn that there is no a single way to solve a problem. What makes it rewarding and fun is working hands-on to figure out the most effective solution. In doing so, students develop problem-solving and critical thinking skills without even noticing all the hard work they are doing. Robotics is an excellent tool for this type of learning because it is a visible, tangible application. Our instructors are trained to grab students' interest and run with it to sustain their interest, inherently stimulating and strengthening their problem-solving and mathematics skills.
When will my child be able to the next level or to an advanced group?
All our programs are divided into complexity levels. Students are allowed to advance to the next level only when they demonstrate a better-than-satisfactory level of understanding at their current level. We do not follow a social promotion model.By the same token, students will not be confined to a class if they demonstrate a level of understanding well beyond the rest of the class. Even within a term, when such a situation arises, we proactively contact parents to recommend that their children be moved up to the most appropriate level. Our advanced groups are reserved for students who have demonstrated a mastery of many lower levels.
My child wish to join the same workshop module this summer. Will he/she repeat the same thing like last summer?
This depends in part on the complexity of the program and on your child’s retention of knowledge obtained in the previous summer. However, since all our programs have open-ended challenges, students may always improve on their past solutions by applying more sophisticated concepts. If you are unsure, please contact us.
Am I required to purchase a robotic kit to join roboclub?
No, we provide robotics kits at the center. SR does not require children to have their own kits unless they have chosen to advance to more sophisticated projects or participate in competition. All SR-provided materials must remain at the center.Parents may choose to purchase a kit for use at home. Many of our young students demonstrate that they can retain a great deal of basic knowledge and apply it with ease without owning a kit for practice at home. Others have great difficulty applying what they have learned even if they have their own kits. Students who have difficulty at the beginning often find that practicing at home drastically improves their performance. A robotics kit along with the proper software costs about $400. Students who continue with Storming Robots for more than two or three terms have generally demonstrated a sustained interest in robotics that would make investment in a kit worthwhile. Parents of children who are new to robotics may well wish to wait to see if their children have a long-term interest before making such an investment. SR collects information from parents who are interested in selling their old Mindstorms sets at a lower cost. Please contact our office for further information. Please contact our office via Contact us for further information.
How is SR's Robotics Club different from many other robotics programs?
At Storming Robots, we bring system engineering to the grade-school level. Many of our students join us when they are in elementary school and continue with SR until they leave for college, often traveling up to an hour each way to participate in our programs.We provide an application-based learning structure that encourages creative thinking, a skill that helps students transition smoothly to college and stay competitive in any career they choose. Our model prepares students to advance in college engineering studies, such as computer science, artificial intelligence, computer engineering, and mechanical engineering. The achievements of our Robotics Club members in tournaments are a testament to the effectiveness of our model. Our programs offer a continuous learning roadmap that students follow from grade 4 to 12. Programs for students in grades 8 to 12 usually involve projects that require algorithmic and computational thinking and analysis. We provide detailed guidance for students who have been with us for several years, creating individualized roadmaps for their four years in high school based on their personal learning style, interests, strengths and weaknesses. We have found that this helps students to define themselves clearly and boosts their competitiveness in the college application process.
Will my child be able to join competition teams after a few terms?Only those who have met the given criteria. As students entering high school years, the requirements will be much more demanding, especially in their software development/design , problems solving, and trouble shooting skills, as well as teamwork. Entering competitions with Storming Robots is at the Administration's discretion.
Can I have makeup session?
We highly encourage students to be committed to the robotics classes schedule and not to miss a class unnecessarily.
Our strength is to stay fluid with each individual group's interest and learning in order to allow the fullest learning potential. Due to the nature of team work, it causes disruption to others. In addition to open-end challenge environment, group discussions, thought stimulation among members, interaction with partners, etc., are all different from class to class. It is almost impossible to replicate with another class.
Purpose of any makeup session is to ensure students to catch up with class pace, "not" to make up hours. Without proper skills set and maturity, it is not productive to seat-in another classroom to make up 2 hours of work on your own. For non-advanced groups, it is far more productive that instructor provides extra assistance to the student for catching up. No makeup sessions will be neccessary for lower level students.Please review details on makeup sessions.
What Qualifications and Experience Do Your Instructors Have?
As a year-round educational facility focusing in robotics engineering, Storming Robots employs instructors and assistants who are engaged in robotics throughout the school year. This allows us to provide an exceptional level of experience and competency in the subject matter compared with other pre-college institutions.Our instructors include:
All adult staffs have passed criminal background check.
You may view the center schedule at our Calender Page.
At Which level should my child start?
Most children should start at the beginning level. For example, a child in sixth grade should join the group "Gr. 4-6: B & I." , i.e. Beginning and Level I.Each group is given projects with multiple complexity levels. When children demonstrate that they have mastered a certain level, we reassign them to another group that we deem will offer an appropriate challenge. Similarly, if we find that a child is having far too much difficulty in a group, we will move him or her into a lower level group. There is always an opportunity to move up, and we try to avoid putting children in situations where we may have to move them down.
How long does it take to move from one level to another?
All students move at their own pace and are grouped by their performance, not by the amount of time they have spent on a level. Please bear in mind that students do not automatically move up a level each term. The higher the level a student is in, the longer it will take to move up to the next level.
Will I receive Performance Reports ?Storming Robots provides the following performance reports: Fall: Work Habit Report (sent out in the second half of the term) Winter: Only those who experience great difficulty in catching up or have other issues that require parental intervention will receive a report. In such cases, students will most likely receive a report much before the end of the Winter term. Spring: Work Habit Report and Technical Performance Report
The final product that your child built in class/workshop is a genuine robotic
contraption which contains electronic components, as well as requires programming
software in order to keep it functioning in the future.