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Here in ActivePuzzle we love to learn by playing (honestly, who doesn't?), and this is why we invented the ActivePuzzle game, active puzzle pieces which form robots. We are scientists and engineers who happened to be educators. For a long time we were seeking a language to express exciting ideas. We believe we found it.

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© 2019 ActivePuzzle

ActivePuzzle User Guide

This is a quick start guide to ActivePuzzle. For further information please visit the online ActivePuzzle course.

What is ActivePuzzle?

ActivePuzzle is a game for learning robotics by simply building robots out of puzzles. This game was designed to develop computational thinking while playing by experiencing and assimilating basic computational concepts:

  • Input (from sensors) and Output (to actuators)

  • Logic – inverse, AND, OR, filtering

  • Conditional execution – robotic function execution as dependent on an input value.

  • Repeated execution – robotic function execution while a certain condition holds.

  • Electronics concepts – as implementing the robot logic: voltage, current, resistance.

Additionally, ActivePuzzle encourages creativity, problem solving and teamwork while playing and building robots.


Who is this Course For?

This guide is for educators who wish to teach robotics young children/students. The ActivePuzzle game was designed to enable learning by doing, that is, conclude the above computational concepts by simply playing and building robot models. Therefore, we recommend the inverse learning methodology, where the children first build robots, and then discuss and conclude the ideas and principles behind those robots. Educators can use the robot models, the concepts and the conclusions brought here to support student learning.


Course Structure

This course has five lessons, each containing three robot models. Each robot model is then discussed and explained in detail, emphasizing scientific and technology principles.

Each lesson includes the following parts:

  • Robot models with each including a description and puzzle parts, with their ordinal number, composing that model.

  • Detailed explanation of the robot models.

  • Conclusions.

We suggest letting the students first build the robots described in the lesson, experience with their operation, optionally alternating them, and then try reaching the conclusions by themselves, using their own words.

Connecting Puzzles

To connect two puzzles first insert one into the other in 90 degrees, then rotate, as follows:

ActivePuzzle Principles

The following principles apply when building ActivePuzzle robots:

  • An ActivePuzzle robot must include at least one battery, one input puzzle (red) and one output puzzle (black)

  • All puzzles but the logic (blue color) are direction neutral, that is, you can lay them in any direction. For the logic puzzles (blue), the two inner circles are the inputs and the two outer circles are the outputs, as follows:

Robot Models

Following are robot models you can build to better understand how ActivePuzzle works:

Control the LED using the potentiometer.
Light Meter
Measure the light using a light sensor and a voltmeter.
Temperature Meter
Measure the temperature using a temperature sensor and a voltmeter.
Smart Fan
The motor fan works only when an object is detected by the proximity sensor.
Follower Dog
The Proximity Sensor triggers the two motors when a hand is detected.
Mom Comes In Alarm
The proximity sensor, which is watching the room entrance, triggers the buzzer when mom comes in.
Wake Alarm
The light sensor triggers the buzzer when the sun comes out.
Electric Scooter
The pot. triggers the two motors & wheels. The bottom brick stabilizes the robot, the top is used for Lego extensions.
Smart Street Light
The LED is activated only when someone is detected by the proximity sensor.
Smart Fan 2
The motor & propeller speed depends on the temperature value.
Two Motor Rotation
Two motors can be used to rotate the robot around its center.
Ballet Dancer
The wheel is on the ground and the motor rotates, causing the whole robot structure to rotate.
This robot finds the cave exit: it moves with one motor, which rotates while no (NOT) light (light sensor) was detected.
AI Ranger
This robot moves around (motor-NOT-proximity) until detecting an object, then it beeps (buzzer) and stops .
Satellite Finder
The motor end turns around the buzzer end until a satellite is detected.
Smart Street Light 2
The LED light is activated when it’s dark (NOT-Light sensor).
Police Car with A Single Motor
The wave causes the LED and the buzzer to oscillate while the robot moves, just like a police car.
Mom & Wake Alarm
Using the logic OR, the buzzer beeps either when mom comes in or when the sun comes out.
Thief Alarm
Two robots: the IR transmitter (05) sends a constant signal to the IR receiver (10). The buzzer is activated when the thief foot blocks the signal, using the logic NOT.
Check the Dog Height
Two robots: one is a follower dog and the other beeps only when it detects a three-floor or a higher dog .
Police Car with Two Motors
Same as the previous police car but with two motors.
Fire Alarm
The buzzer is activated when the temperature goes beyond the level set by the analog-to-digital (19).
Two robots isolated using the insulator (14): the left is a LED light blinking using the wave (15), and the right beeps when detecting a ship .
Soil Moisture Monitor
The Arduino block (17) is connected to an external moisture sensor. The buzzer is activated when its dry beyond the level set by the Analog-to-Digital (19).
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Two robots isolated using the insulator (14): the left is a LED light blinking using the wave (15), and the right beeps when detecting a ship .