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El Dorado County 4-H Youth engineer robotic solutions on 4-H National Youth Science Day

By From page B6 | October 03, 2012

Youth in El Dorado County 4-H will join millions of young people across the nation to become scientists for the day during the fifth annual 4-H National Youth Science Day on Saturday, Oct. 6.

This event seeks to spark an early youth interest in science and future science careers and to reclaim the nation’s position of leadership in scientific exploration.

“Our nation is falling behind other countries in the fields of science, technology, engineering and math,” said Tracy Celio, 4-H Youth Development. “However, participation in high-quality positive youth development programs like 4-H NYSD offers youth and adults the opportunity to engage in scientific exploration and work together to build the next generation of our nation’s scientists, engineers and mathematicians.”

As part of 4-H NYSD youth will participate in the 4-H Eco-Bot Challenge: the 2012 National Science Experiment.

Designed by The Ohio State University Extension, this year’s experiment will introduce youth to robotic engineering concepts as they program an autonomous robot to clean up a simulated environmental spill. El Dorado County 4-H students will enhance their engineering skills by assembling their own Eco-Bots and surface controls to manage the environmental clean-up. Youth will then test the interaction between the Eco-Bot’s design features and various surface control configurations to determine the most effective clean-up solution for the simulated spill.

The Eco Bot Challenge will be held from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. at the El Dorado Hills Library, 7455 Silva Valley Parkway. To reserve a space for your child call (916) 358-3500.

“I participated in 4-H National Youth Science Experiment at the Ames Research Institute,” said Carlo McCallick, 9, of El Dorado County. “I learned how to make a robot that can clean up an oil spill and I got to make my own modifications to improve the experiment. The experiments are really cool! I can’t wait to teach other kids the 4-H Eco-Bot Challenge this year.”

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