Eighteen years is a long time. I suspect one day soon I'll have a "second generation" student.
The program has also changed a bit. They used to run four sessions a year, giving me only 6 work periods per group. Barely enough to slap together something crude. Then for many years we had three sessions a year, giving my students a nice comfy nine work sessions.
Now they are doing just two semester long sessions. So I have to keep the kids occupied for 12 weeks.
That is actually too much time. So we will start with the standard 3 pound combat robot project and have our tournament, as usual, in early November. The last four weeks we will have them modify a pair of "Barbie Jeeps" and finish up with a Remote Control Barbie Jeep Grand Prix through the hallways.
Supplies, tools and materials for the 3 pound robots were assembled and it was off and building.
Seems like we always get the characters. This kid's response to the obvious instruction was: "I am a scientist. I don't have to tie my shoelaces".
And going crazy with a hole saw making wheels.
And....lying in wait out in the shed, two nice Barbie Jeeps. You can always find these, just put a note in the district wide newsletter. Kids are always outgrowing them and people are usually happy to give them away rather than bother with trashing or recycling them.
One is even an official Disney Princess model, for extra ironic fun!
After 18 years I have enough seniority to get away with a lot. This year they asked me what title I wanted to have in the official course description. I suggested Robot Overlord.
And they went for it.