BasicX and Robotics Classes

From 2 hours to 30 hours of Visual Basic Programming instruction

using Chris Odom’s Excellent Text:

“Basic-X and Robotics - The Art of Making Machines Think”

The Robodyssey Software Training System (RSTS)

For Basic-X Software and Mouse Robot

Robodyssey’s ‘Software Training System’ uses a stimulating combination of classroom challenges and entertaining guided tutorials to teach children and young adults the basic concepts of programming logic that they will need to succeed in science, technology, engineering and math, or S.T.E.M. The Robodyssey Software Training System is flexible and can be tailored to accommodate a variety of age groups. Students will learn programming skills based on Microsoft’s Visual Basic language while competing in non-destructive classroom challenges. 

Program Features:

  • Robodyssey provides experienced, energetic teachers.
  • Robodyssey provides robots, laptops, software and hardware needed to complete the challenges.
  • Robodyssey uses “real” university grade robots programmed in Visual Basic compiler.
  • Students learn at their own pace with our “self-guided software tutorials”.
  • Students learn real world programming skills in Microsoft Visual Basic.

Student Activities:

  • Understand Software:           Learn the basics of a compiler and its operation
  • Use Variables:                      Manipulate variables to control motion
  • Control Motion:                     Use finite and infinite Loops to control motion
  • Use Subroutines:                   Learn to use subroutines to create more complex movements
  • Convert Analog to Digital:      Convert analog data from sensors to digital data for programs
  • Avoid Obstacles:                    Use real world data from sensors to make computer decisions
  • Sense Heights:                       ‘Teach’ robots how to sense and react to height
  • Construct Scanning Turret:     Assemble and program robot ‘eyes’ that move

Some of our Non-Destructive Robot Competitions

Blind Bot’s Bluff: ‘Dead-Reckoning’ Maze challenge - program robots to navigate a minefield of robot swallowing holes

Robot Dance: ‘Dead-Reckoning’ exercise where students manipulate variables to create a set of complex dance moves, and add light sensors to ‘Dance in the Dark.’

Gripper Challenge: Challenge to pick and place objects on a maze, ‘Dead Reckoning’ (without sensors)

Desktop Challenge: Robots explore desktop using range-finding sensors to solve a maze of blocks scattered around an elevated tabletop and avoid falling.

Sumo Robots: Robots use downward-looking sensors to stay in the ring for ‘Blind Sumo’, and forward-looking sensors to refine Sumo robots.

Other Challenges: Measure and record changes in light, heat, pressure, sound, conductivity over time; make music, follow light, follow black line, make sound and light codes and light patterns, display AtoD out-put of data collected

Some of the Programming Terms used:

Debug.Print     GetADC         Delay               Call                  If – Then

PulseOut         Dim                 Do - While      Cstr                 Do – Loop

 For more information about this and other Robodyssey programs please visit our site at To speak with someone about scheduling a session please contact Robodyssey.


For Teachers:

Robodyssey offers: “Teacher Training for Programming Robots with BasicX”
This hands-on seminar is a great way to get an overview on how easy it is to teach computer science through robotics.Features include:

  • Robodyssey robots and hardware.
  • Robodyssey lap-top computers.
  • We can accommodate up to 20 teachers at your location.
  • Teachers learn how easy and fun it is to teach MicrosoftTM Visual BasicTM style programming using robotics.

We are also available for ninety minute group seminars on “Using Robotics to Teach Technology”, and “Starting a Robotics Club in Your School”. Of course, all the professional development training we provide can be counted towards the One Hundred Hour Teacher Training Requirement.

For Students:

Robodyssey also offers a variety of sessions ranging from two hours to two weeks on robot building and programming directly to your students or clubs. This program is ideal for after-school, summer camp and community opportunities.


Features include:

  • We provide all the robots and hardware.
  • We provide our own lap-top computers.
  • We provide our own instructors.
  • We use “real” university grade robots.
  • Students learn at their own pace with our “self-guided software tutorial”.
  • Students learn real world programming skills based on a MicrosoftTM Visual BasicTM style platform.
  • Each educational unit ends with a classroom project based on a Non-destructive robot competition.


Goals and objectives:

  • Students learn basic skills in mechanics, assembly and physics.
  • Students learn common programming syntaxes.
  • Students will experience real world challenges involving analog to digital conversion and robotic navigation.
  • Students get to have fun while learning good sportsmanship and teamwork.


Please contact Robodyssey directly for these special education programs.