Robotics education is an excellent way to teach things that are often difficult to teach.
This is especially true when trying to teach leadership, teamwork, creativity, and problem-solving skills. As a nice bonus, robotics education is a great tool to make mathematics and physics more interesting to more students and introduce a STEM initiative in your school. Indeed, there is perhaps no better way to introduce middle and high school students to engineering.
Robotics education can be introduced to your school as an extracurricular activity.
You can do this by forming a school robotics team which will compete in one of the contests that are discussed below. Another option is to bring in robotics education to the classroom. If you are a science or math teacher, this could be a good idea. As the cost of robotics comes down, an increasing number of classrooms are integrating robotics education into their curriculum.
At the moment, robotics education is primarily present in middle and high schools through robotics teams. If you are interested in starting your own robotics team, there are a number of organizations that want to help you out. Be sure to thoroughly research each one and assess what they offer in the context of your own goals.
Each organization and competition below offers a great deal of resources for you if you wish to start a robotics team or bring robotics education into your classroom. Generally speaking, they provide guidance, materials to construct robots along with information on how to register for competitions.
The Robotics Education and Competition Foundation is a nonprofit organization that attempts to connect students, mentors, and schools and communities throughout the world to robotics competitions and programs. This organization is associated with many of the most prominent robotics competitions and has a calendar on their websites with all the upcoming robotics competitions.
VEX Robotics Design System hosts the VEX Robotics Competition, which is the fastest-growing robotics competition for middle and high school students. These competitions involve creating robots that are assigned a certain task, which they compete against other team to perform. The robots are part automated and part remote control. They also provide extensive resources for teachers who wish to include robotics in their curriculum. Their website is http://vexrobotics.com
FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) is one of the oldest robotics competitions, having run competitions since 1992. Their robots are completely autonomous. Their website is at http://www.USFIRST.org
Read Get Ready for School Competitions and Curriculum for additional information about these organizations.
There are other competitions for robotics education. Here is a list of some of the other large ones, along with their websites.