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Mars Rover-Exploring Mars Geology
Lab 4 - Planetary Geologist

Teacher Portal

Materials Needed

The following is a list of all the materials that are needed to complete the VEX GO Lab. These materials include student facing materials as well as teacher facilitation materials. It is recommended that you assign two students to each VEX GO Kit.

In some Labs, links to teaching resources in a slideshow format have been included. These slides can help provide context and inspiration for your students. Teachers will be guided in how to implement the slides with suggestions throughout the lab. All slides are editable, and can be projected for students or used as a teacher resource. To edit the Google Slides, make a copy into your personal Drive and edit as needed.

Other editable documents have been included to assist in implementing the Labs in a small group format. Print the worksheets as is or copy and edit those documents to suit the needs of your classroom. Example Data Collection sheet setups have been included for certain experiments as well as the original blank copy. While they offer suggestions for setup, these documents are all editable to best suit your classroom and the needs of your students.

Materials Purpose Recommendation

Pre-built Code Base - Eye + Electromagnet

For demonstration purposes. 1 for demonstration


To build the Code Base - Eye + Electromagnet and use the Disks for Lab activities. 1 per group

Code Base Build Instructions

To build the Code Base. 1 per group

Code Base - Eye + Electromagnet Build Instructions

To add the Eye Sensor and Electromagnet to the Code Base. 1 per group

Tablet or Computer 

To access VEXcode GO. 1 per group

VEXcode GO

For students to build projects for the Code Base. 1 per group

Lab 4 Image Slideshow

Google Doc / .pptx / .pdf

For visual aids while teaching. 1 for class to view

Robotics Roles & Routines

Google Doc / .docx / .pdf

Editable Google Doc for organizing group work and best practices for using the VEX GO Kit. 1 per group

Sort All - VEXcode GO Blocks File

To use with students in the Engage section. Share this file with students, or download on student computers or tablets. Then, have students open the file in VEXcode GO. 1 per group


For students to fill out the Robotics Roles & Routines checklist. 1 per group

VEX GO Field Tiles and Walls

To use as a testing area for the Code Base. 4 Tiles and 8 Walls per testing area

Pin Tool

To help remove pins or pry beams apart. 1 per group

Dry erase marker (optional) 

To mark the locations of the Disk and sorting area on the Field. 1 per group

White board eraser (optional)

To erase the marker on the Field at the end of the Lab. 1 per group


Begin the lab by engaging with the students.

  1. Hook

    The Mars rovers, like Perseverance, need to collect samples from different places. But when the rover comes back to the Mars base, do the samples get sorted in the same way? Do you think that the sorting process is a pattern we would want to repeat if we collected more samples? Why or why not?

  2. Leading Question

    There is a special kind of block, called a [My Block], that we can make in VEXcode GO to reuse sequences of code that repeat in a project. What did the Code Base do each time it collected a Disk and brought it back to the Mars Base? If we were going to create a project to have the robot collect and sort multiple Disks, what actions would be repeated?

  3. Build Code Base - Eye + Electromagnet


Allow students to explore the concepts introduced.

Part 1

Students will use the [My Block] created during Engage to build and test a project to solve the challenge of collecting a Red, Green, and Blue Disk from different locations, and sorting them to their specified sorting areas based on their color.

Mid-Play Break

Check in on students' progress and talk about how the [My block] is functioning in their projects. Who was able to collect one Disk? Two Disks? Was anyone able to collect all three Disks?

Part 2

Students will continue to iterate, build, and test their projects to add the blocks needed to collect and sort all three Disks to their respective sorting areas, using the [My Block] in their project.


Allow students to discuss and display their learning.

A VEX GO character

Discussion Prompts