March 5, 2021, 10 to 10:30 a.m.
College of Fine Arts
Texas Performing Arts

Meet the Showbots!

How a pandemic inspired creativity and connection through cardboard robots
Arts, Design and Media
Age group: All Ages, Elementary School, Middle/Junior High School

When the pandemic made it impossible to teach a hands-on robot building course in person, UT professors “went small” and collaborated with a teacher to create a remote Robot Club at Metz-Sanchez elementary in Austin. The Robot Club students designed all kinds of robots. Some robots had the mission to help parents, some to bake bread for the hungry, others to clean the environment (or messy bedrooms). Then UT students from Engineering and Fine Arts built these designs with simple materials including cardboard, re-used packaging, and cereal boxes as well as sophisticated technology included lights, motors, and a WIFI connected brain. Finally, after many weeks of coding, soldering, painting, hot glue burns, and a healthy dose of silliness, the robots met their Robot Club designers for the first time in a Zoom call where kids sent their first commands to their robots via an interactive website. Twenty amazing robots were created. In this session you learn more about five of them and get to meet the robot makers. You will also learn about the how robots work, and a few lucky teachers will even get the chance to control one of the robots live via the internet! If you are a teacher who wants your class room to control a robot remotely via website controls, please register here ( ) for login information and additional instructions. Space is limited!