AUVSI Saguaro Co-Hosts International Drone Day

AUVSI Saguaro Chapter co-hosted International Drone Day (IDD), along with the youngest IDD team, Moxie Girls, an all-girl computer science club at Sierra Verde STEM Academy, where the event took place. The first IDD event in Phoenix, AZ saw roughly 100 people from the community come out and explore all the different drones flying and on display.

IDD #7

The goal of the day was to highlight the ways that drones are positiviely impacting Arizona, showcasing that drones are good. It was an opportunity for those in the community to interact with the technology. A favorite quote was from a young girl who said “I had no idea drones were this much fun. I am going to definitely get one now”.

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This public display showed the city mayor how the community positively views drones. The City of Glendale prohibits the use of drones in the city parks (Article III, Division 2, Sec. 27-51). It was monumental for the City of Glendale, Mayor Weiers, to come out and have personal interaction with the IDD community and see the types of technology on display. He talked with the Moxie Girls, who had a recent drone build at Sierra Verde, and had the opportunity to fly a DJI Matrice 600, thanks to Innovative UAS. Mayor Weiers was very supportive of the technology, and AUVSI Saguaro Chapter looks forward to working with him and the City of Glendale on the city ordinance.

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Flite Factory set up a drone race course on the school field and many fpv drone pilots came out for a “fun fly”. RETHINK Real Estate and LMP360 Media had a drawing for a drone! A Sierra Verde female student was thrilled to have won.

It was a great day had by all and a day of education and showcasing drones are good!

IDD #6

~Lorie Grabham


Mannequin Challenge “Computer Science Edition.”

What do you do when you have a week until the First Lego League qualifying tournament? The answer is quite simple.

The girls have been working around the clock fine tuning their programs, demonstrating FLL’s Core Values, and preparing their research presentations. We know the girls have been giving every ounce to this project. We as coaches felt we had to lighten the mood a little bit and let the girls have some fun.

We as coaches came up with the idea to pull off our own Mannequin challenge that highlights the awesomeness of computer science, girl power, and awesome music. The girls were so pumped to be doing this. It really added an extra pep to their step for the day. They were bummed some of our girls were missing and they want to do another one when all the girls are present. The true definition of a team.

There has been a lot of Mannequin Challenges popping up all over YouTube. Lego did a great one. The Cleveland Cavaliers may have had the best one at the White House, and now people are doing them with their pets. Those may be my favorite.

Here is our tribute to how awesome computer science is.

We did this in two takes. The first cut was due to the fact that our littlest Moxie Girls arm got tired. We pulled them together at the end of our meeting and they loved doing this. Just another reason why Girls Rock!!!

Lego really did an amazing job with this one.

To pull this off at the White House is impressive. Well done by the Cleveland Cavilers. It cracks me up LeBron blinked twice during the challenge.

~Mr. Lane

Skype Mentor

Last Thursday the Moxie Girls did more coding on the robots to accomplish certain missions. The two groups Moxie Girls, and Moxie Girls 2.0 worked really hard in coding the Ev3 robots just right.

Later on we had a Skype Mentor, named Rei Cameron. She works at Create Space which is a science and technology center downtown. They work with laser cutters and 3D printers to make cool objects like jewelry and figurines. She is the definition of woman empowerment in the field of Science and Technology and we love that she spent the time to talk to us!


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How to Embed a YouTube video into a Blog Post

Disclaimer: Be prepared for a mini meltdown at the 2:56 mark.

Step 1: Click the YouTube video you want to share within your blog post.

Step 2: Hit the share button below the video.

Step 3: Hit embed.

Step 4: Copy the embed code.

Step 5: Center and paste embed code within your blog post.

Step 6: Add 100 to the height and width of the YouTube video. (660 & 415)

Step 7: Publish blog post.

Keep Calm and Embed On

~Mr. Lane

How to Add a Blog Post!!!

Step 1: Go to Google classroom (Password and Login)

Step 2: Go Word Press.

Step 3: Click my websites.

Step 4: Add blog post.


Step 5: Publish

Step 6: Sign your name.

Once you publish your first blog post you get your Create Space made Moxie Girl sticker!!! Make sure you thank Ella and Mrs. Scofield for all of their hard work on these.

~Mr. Lane

The A Port (Programming the Arm)

Today we are going to start earning some points!!! I am so excited to see how many missions we have accomplished when it is all said and done. My hope is that each team earns close to 100 points after today. That would be an amazing first day.

Make sure the Medium Motor is plugged into the A Port.

Make it happen!!!

All rotations with the A Port should be less than 1 rotation!!! Try .1, .2, 25, & .5 to get the desired action.

As you saw in the video due to the fact that the robot could not complete the command it got stuck and it could complete the next command block. 

Small adjustments make all of the difference!!!

Understanding how the A Port operates is critical to our success as a team. Having a good understanding of how the A Port works will literally make or break us as a team.

Mrs. Scofield and I cannot stress enough how important wait blocks are as well. If you allow the robot a single second to come to a complete stop and get settled before the next command block. We know that every second counts, but these seconds used with wait blocks are critical for a programs success.

Now get out there and make some things happen with the robotic arm!!!

~Mr. Lane

Programming the Robots

Today is an exciting day because we are finally going to start programming the robots!!! We have worked very hard to get to this point. I made these videos so you can use them as a reference as you start programming. I cannot wait to see your first successful program on the table today.

It is super easy to program. We will all take an active role when it comes to programming. EVERYONE will be a master programmer by the end of today.

I was super nervous it was going to drive off the counter and crash waking up the kids.

The Tank Turn

It is essential that we become experts with the tank turns. We need to take into account the power, the rotations, the battery life, etc. The list goes on and on. We are going to do everything in our power to help each other along the way. We need to always remember we are one big team willing to share our ideas with others.

A single rotation and this one almost did a complete 360˙ turn.

Reducing the rotations by 1 made all of the difference.

Today is going to be an amazing day and we cannot wait to see how it goes. Finally it is here. We are programming the ROBOTS!!! Why are you yelling Mr. Lane? I am so fired up!!!

~Mr. Lane

The Tables Start to Turn

For our future tournaments, we need our Lego League Tables! This involved a great deal of teamwork, multi-tasking, and people finding each other’s items. We all split into teams of two and one team worked on one set of bags. It seemed focused and pretty quiet in the room, and everyone almost finished with their parts. It may take more than 1 week, but everyone is working like there’s no tomorrow! I honestly think the tables will be done next week.


It was very fun working with my partner, Grace! Even though we lost a few pieces, we worked to together to find a substitute! Even though our build has tan colored eye-lids, it still has an amazing part on the board! The build may be a walrus, but we can’t quite figure it out! It was so fun building and trying to figure out which pieces go where. I can admit that it was very fun!


We heard screams of joy where partners finished building. One set was a pink pig, another was a dog who could sit, and another was a forest biome with a cliff! Those pieces all come together to build a 3-D work of art! When people work together, people can make something amazing and out of this world in no time.


We also need to thank a huge fan and an awesome helper! Ms. Kinney was our sub when Mr. Lane and Mrs. Scofield were out. She was amazing with us and encouraged us all the way! Through our struggles that day, to the encouraging thoughts she pointed out, Ms. Kinney was an amazing help, and we will gladly ask her to come again!


Until Next Time Folks!

Hannah (Panda)

FLL Kickoff

Last Saturday my mom and Mr. Lane took us to the First Lego League Kickoff at ASU. We got there and had some slight difficulties with the parking (courtesy to my mom and her deficiency for any sense of direction) Anyways, we got there and there were so many people in the building. We walked into the presentation room and were immediately drawn over to the photo booth advertising the Animal Allies theme for the year.


Hilary Mitchell from FLL gave us a preview about what was going to be happening in the competition. Meaning what the board was going to look like and what some of the challenges would be. Then we were given a schedule for all the workshops. We went to one really cool one where four adults with careers involving animals and how we can help them and do research about them. My mom and Mr. Lane also went to learn about how you can become an effective coach. We the kids decided to sit that one out!

After we ate lunch and we went to the last workshop. It was really neat to see all the parts of the programming app that we had never known how to use before that. We had this one great program where we “discretely” had Mr. Lane stand at the end of the table. The robot shot plastic balls at him, it was really funny!

Going to this function was truly an amazing experience. It was neat to get a sneak peek at all the amazing things we have planned for the next few months!