STEM Camp 2018

Shelby Woods, a team member of the Algonac Robotics FRC team, organized the team’s first STEM camp.  Day one was all about team names, getting to know each other, and BRIDGES!  We learned about different types of bridges.  Each camper then got to build a marshmallow bridge and test its strength with pennies.  This was day one of  the three day camp, and we can’t wait to see what our campers will learn next!

FLL Mentor Camp 2018

Algonac Robotics FRC Members attended our first, two day FLL (FIRST LEGO League) Mentor Camp this week to prepare for the upcoming INTO ORBIT challenge.  This will be the FLL Iron Rats third year as a team and we are looking forward to having our FRC team members mentor our team.  During the camp we built a simple robot, learned some coding basics, and discussed FLL in general.  We also talked through what the Mentors roll would be.  FLL teams compete with an autonomous LEGO robot of their own creation, to complete a series of missions for competition.  They are also challenged to come up with an innovative solution to a real world problem and present it not only to the judges during competition but also those who might benefit from their solution before competition.  They are also tasked with learning and using the FIRST Core Values as a team and out in their communities.  Having experienced mentors this season will be a big help for the team to be able to learn and grow so much more!

Algonac Robotics T-Shirt Cannon is now a reality!

One one of off season project was to build a t-shirt / stress ball / candy launcher so we can create some excitement about the club in our community. Our original plan was to build it for the fall football game.

Deerbrook Builders and Cortis Bros are sponsoring events on Wednesday night and they ask if we could help. The goal is to create some positive energy in our community and they though a t-shirt canon would be a great way to build some excitement with the younger crowd.

As a result, we put some minds together and build our first prototype. Here some of the highlights of this project.

  • We consulted with Breathing Air company located in Columbus. OH and they donated the high price regulator and safety valve required to operate this robot safely.
  • Island Machine and Engineering totally kick butt on this and help design and build the barrel and holding brackets.
  • Brackett Auto donated a pretty hefty hose and a few accessories/tools to ensure proper airflow.
  • Kloeffler Industries welded the barrel fitting.
  • Clay Township Fire Department is also helping with the compressed air bottle and refill when needed.

Great job to all involved, football game and school events are going to be a blast!











How to use Google Classroom at Algonac Robotics

Intro to Google Classroom

This blog is a quick intro to Google Classroom ad how we will use that framework to manage our training.

The goal is to have a platform that allow coaches and mentors to create classes and learning modules in a way that students can accomplish by themselves.

To use Google classroom, you must have a Gmail account.

Getting Started!

Google Classroom can be use on your regular PC via the browser (we recommend Chrome) or by installing the app on you mobile device.

Once the app is installed, simply open and log in using your Google account.

There is 2 ways to join a classroom:

  1. Click on the + sign and enter the provided class code.
  2. You will receive an email with a “Join Classroom” link that will allow you to join a classroom.
Once a classroom is added to your profile, you will see it on the app.
To “enter” a classroom, click on the classroom block. You will then see the classroom content.
The main classroom content is called the “Stream”.  Within the stream you will find many “learning module” or assignment to be completed.
Each learning module or assignment will show it’s status. You can quickly see if you are done with a learning module or not.
If you click on the assignment title, it will open the assignment on its own page. Most learning module or assignment will have a small instruction on what to do to get the learning module completed.
You will also see links and other resources such as YouTube videos and/or Google documents to review and sometimes quizzes to complete each assignments.

When you are done with an assignment, you can turn in material or create a new google docs wih whatever the assignment is asking you to do. In some instance, it could be to write an essay or turn a small research. Use the tool as directed and then click on “Mark as Done”.

Algonac Robotics Newsletter 10/21/2017

Algonac Robotics FLL, FTC & FRC Team!

It’s official, mark your calendars our competition dates for the 2017-2018 competitions are as follows:

FLL IronRats #23866


  • Event Information can be found here
  • Team RSVP can be found here


FTC RoboRats #9819

11/4/2017  Canton
11/18/2017  Marysville
Potential Advancements Below
12/15/2017  Michigan State FTC Championship – Battle Creek
TBD  North Super Regional Iowa
04/25/2018 First World Championships – Detroit


FRC Full Metal Muskrats #5860


03/08/2018 Waterford
04/05/2018 Marysville
Potential Advancements Below
04/11/2018 Michigan State Championships – Saginaw Valley State University
04/25/2018 First World Championships – Detroit


Algonac Robotics Newsletter 8/29/2017

Team Members,
I will be picking up the salsa order on Thursday afternoon at Buddies Food and it will be ready for pick up in the lab on Thursday from 5pm tp 6pm.
If you have an order, please make arrangement to pick up before the meeting. Same goes if you can be there because of the football game, otherwise, contact me to make arrangements. We want to make sure that it stay cold.
This was a last minute trial and we still raised $546. Thank you for everyone that participated.
We also received a $2000.00 sponsorship from Esys Automation.
Coach Nicole is keeping track for each students so we can all attain our goal as a team!
Business Sponsorship brochure is also ready for prime time. If you know someone in a local (or far away!!!!) business that would be interested in supporting our team, make sure you grab a brochure and talk to them about our team. The sponsorship levels are defined on the brochure and it explained what we do at a high level. If they have more questions, feel free to direct anyone to our web site and / or have them contact one of the coach listed on the brochure.
All future communication for the 2017-2018 season will be via remind. This is the only easy tool to use that allow you to choose between email or text. It is very convenient for all of us.
If you plan on attending both seasons, sign up for both!
For all FRC students, we will ask that you join our Slack Group. Click here for more information on Slack.
FTC Students are not required but we encouraged you to join if you feel that you could benefits from it. The channels are there to be use, all official blog from FIRST get automatically added to our channel and this is where we will have all internal communications between team members and/or coaches during the seasons. Parents that have the proper iChat form approved are also encourage to join and participate as needed. The vision is that we brainstorm and exchange ideas on the proper slack channels so everyone can benefits and provide inputs.
Lastly, our FLL team got quite a challenge this year! the Hydro Dynamics game promise to be a lot of fun. If you are in the FRC team and would like to help the FLL team, please contact the coaches and we will connect you with them. Good luck IronRats!  To view the missions, click here. 
See you on Thursday night, 6-9pm.
Coach Seb

Algonac Robotics Newsletter 8/17/17

What a great start to our 2017-18 season.

Orientation night went very well! Thank you to everyone that came and I hope you learn about our club.

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This post will have link about the documents we talked about yesterday.

Feel free to download and print the form needed. If anyone has any issues with access or file format, please contact myself or Coach Nicole right away. We will do our best to accommodate.

So here are the links:

Students Application Form – Google form to apply to the club.

Presentations – Slide deck that we presented at orientation.

Remind Signup Instruction  – This is the 2 remind instructions. One for FTC, and the other for FRC… Feel free to sign for both as needed.

Publication Authorization Form – This is to authorize the club for using students pictures for our social media or other publications. Also in the student handbook.

Facebook Group – Community facebook group for community outreach.

Student Handbook – Algonac Robotics rules and guidelines.

iChat Form – Mandatory if parents / guardians wants to volunteer with students.

Salsa Order Form – Fall Fundraisers form.

Salsa Product Description – Fall Fundraisers Description.

Furthermore, there is a few more forms at the end of the handbook that need to be reviewed, signed and turn in.



Newsletter 04/10/2017


There is no word that properly describe how excited, proud and accomplished i am after this weekend.

It is official, we are not making it to States but, i will tell you, it was by a very slight margin. 451 teams were competing for 160 spots and we finish in 159th. There is a few teams ranked lower than us that earned the Chairman awards and that will get them qualify for States, thus explaining why the cutoff is now at 156…

To put this in perspective, we are the 3rd team on the list and as of this morning only a handful had not confirmed that they were going. Therefore, it is pretty safe to assume that we will not be competing at the States this year. Nevertheless, the work that has been done and the skills that we learned are just something that will prepare us for next season.

Here is the FRC District for MI where we stand.



Furthermore, we ranked well beyond the top half in the States, we perform and overranked many teams that have been doing this for years. That is a great accomplishment all in itself.

Here is some of the positive things that we improved/learned that make this year so worth it.

  • WE switched to Java. This is a big deal as this will set us for years to come. It also will provide a continuity between FTC and FRC.
  • WE learned how to use Smart dashboard. This allow us to start showing sensors and robot data and use it to our advantages.
  • WE learned to use on board pneumatic system very effectively.
  • WE learned how to design an electrical enclosure and our cable/wire management was just phenomenal.
  • WE learned that a welded frame is the way to go. Thank you Mr. Privaloff and Oakland Welding!
  • WE learned how to properly wired and connect sensors, encoders and gyroscope… Next year we will use these sensing device to our advantage.
  • WE learned to apply to the Chairman’s awards and the interview process.
  • WE learned to make videos and published them successfully.
  • WE improve on our pit and how to use our tools and system.
  • WE had dedicated Safety Captain at both events and started a safety program.
  • WE started to make our own parts using our Smithy machine and tools.
  • WE improve our scouting. This will take years to build but we are starting to be in the right direction early on.
  • WE painted and made our robot look pretty darn good. I was very proud to display our machine out there…

Most importantly, i see friendship being build and it was a blast for me to be one of your coach. I don’t want to speak for the others, but seeing this team grow and perform like they did was a very rewarding experience and i certainly hope that everybody had some fun through the season so far. This is what this is all about and I am looking forward to whats coming.

We will slow our pace down quite a bit, we have a few things to focus on, recruiting, documenting our learning and start training for next year. There is also a few off season competitions that we can sign up for that i would like the team to go to and show what we are made of.

Our next meeting will be Wednesday at 6-9pm. Hope to see everybody there!

Coach Seb





2017 Marysville Event Info – MUST READ

Here we go!!!!!   This is our local event and its going to be blast !

Pit looks better, buttons are ready, robot is working great and guess what?    Thunder Chickens are coming !!!!

Lets get ready for a great competition. Robot is looking good and time to show all the hard work that has been done by everyone.

Please Print and turn in tonight.

  1. FIRST’s C/R
  2. FIRST in Michigan C/R

We will meet Thursday afternoon at 3pm at the Lab. This will allow us to pack and get on the road to be in Marysville at door opening which is 5pm.

Click here to open the agenda.

Click here for general information on the event.       This includes maps, food and other info.

So here is a recap of what we will do…

Thursday night will setup pit, go thru inspection, make last minute adjustment. Plan on being there until about 10pm. If you need a ride, please let Coach Seb know asap.

Friday morning, plan on meeting in the cafeteria at 745am. Opening Ceremony is at 1030. If you have family and/or friends coming, tell them to come early as seats fill fast. Matches will start at 11am and go thru 9pm.

Saturday morning, plan on meeting in the cafeteria at 745am. Competition will go until about noon, then alliance selection and playoffs in the afternoon. Should be done around 6pm and we will help putting field down at the end. so bring a pair of gloves. Last year it took about an hour to tear down the field.

Everyone should bring some healthy snacks and food to munch on. Coach Seb will bring a cooler with water. We will setup a table in the cafeteria.

This is going to be a fun event, feel free to invite as many friends and family as possible, we need the cheer section to be loud! and yes the Thunder chickens are going to be there….

Any questions, call or text Coach Seb at 586-770-9386.