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  • 12-18 years old
  • 45 minutes - 4 hours, 45 minutes
  • Intermediate
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Students will program the VEX Controller to direct the Clawbot through several engaging challenges using the concepts of loops and events.

Key Concepts

  • How to create, download and run a project

  • Program using events and loops

  • Pairing the Controller to a VEX V5 build

  • How to save a project


  • Follow building instructions to create a robot that will complete a specific task.

  • Analyze directions to configure and program a robot to complete a series of tasks.

  • Pair the Controller to a VEX V5 Brain.

  • Download the correct project template.

  • Explain and use loops to create a project that programs the controller and continuously checks if the buttons/joysticks are being pressed/moved.

  • Create event based projects.

  • Explore programming code used to program the Controller using the Tank Drive and Clawbot Control example projects and test student created projects.

Materials needed

  • VEX V5 Classroom Starter Kit

  • VEXcode V5

  • Engineering Notebook

  • Classroom items to be used as obstacles

Facilitation Notes

  • Teacher support, discussion questions, tips, and student assessment are all organized in the STEM lab to help teachers successfully engage students.

  • VEXcode V5 VEXos should be downloaded to each student device that will be used for programming the Clawbot.

  • Students should become familiar with the various kit pieces before beginning to build the Clawbot.

  • Batteries should be charged for both the Brain and Controller prior to the start of the STEM lab.

  • An engineering notebook can be as simple as lined paper within a folder or binder. The notebook shown is a more sophisticated example that is available through VEX.

Educational Standards

Standards for Technological Literacy (STL)

  • 9.H: Modeling, testing, evaluating, and modifying are used to transform ideas into practical solutions.

  • 11.I: Make a product or system and document the solution.

Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)

  • HS-ETS1-2: Design a solution to a complex real-world problem by breaking it down into smaller, more manageable problems that can be solved through engineering.

Computer Science Teachers Association (CSTA)

  • 3A-AP-13: Create prototypes that use algorithms to solve computational problems by leveraging prior student knowledge and personal interests.

  • 3A-AP-22: Design and develop computational artifacts working in team roles using collaborative tools.

Common Core State Standards (CCSS)

  • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RST.9-10.3: Follow precisely a complex multistep procedure when carrying out experiments, taking measurements, or performing technical tasks, attending to special cases or exceptions defined in the text.

  • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RST.11-12.3: Follow precisely a complex multistep procedure when carrying out experiments, taking measurements, or performing technical tasks; analyze the specific results based on explanations in the text.

  • MP.5: Use appropriate tools strategically.

  • MP.6: Attend to precision.

Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS)

  • 126.32.c.1.D: Create algorithms for the solution of various problems.

  • 126.32.c.2.A: Seek and respond to advice from peers and professionals in evaluating problem solutions.

  • 126.32.c.2.B: Debug and solve problems using reference materials and effective strategies.

  • 126.32.c.4.D: Read and define a problem's description, purpose, and goals.

  • 126.33.c.4.A: Use program design problem-solving strategies to create program solutions.

  • 126.33.c.4.B: Define and specify the purpose and goals of solving a problem.

  • 126.33.c.4.F: Design a solution to a problem.

  • 126.33.c.4.G: Code a solution from a program design.

  • 126.33.c.4.T: Develop iterative algorithms and code programs to solve practical problems.