While V5 STEM Labs were designed for the VEX V5 Kit and follow the SPARK format, there are many ways to teach these STEM Labs with your EXP Kit. In this article, we provide you with resources to help adapt V5 STEM Labs, giving you the flexibility to teach both V5 and EXP STEM Lab Units.

To see how to incorporate both EXP and V5 STEM Labs together in your classroom, see the EXP Cumulative Pacing Guide.


Overall Considerations When Teaching V5 STEM Labs with EXP Kits

V5 STEM Labs follow the SPARK format. To learn more about each section and what is covered, see this article. When adapting these Labs to use with EXP, there are some overarching adaptations that can be made. 

  • Seek: Follow the build instructions for EXP linked below.
  • Play: Adaptations for the play activities will be outlined in the "Adaptations" section.
  • Apply: This section can remain the same.
  • Rethink: Adaptations for the rethink challenges will be outlined in the "Adaptations" section.
  • Know: This section can remain the same.

The Play section in coding STEM Labs covers the set up and other information about VEXcode V5. For information about downloading and using VEXcode EXP, see this section of articles.


The following section identifies an V5 STEM Lab, the V5 build that is used for that Unit, and a compatible EXP Build that you can use to complete the practice and challenge activities. Also included are suggestions for adapting the Play and Rethink activities for each Lab.

Robo Rally

Students are asked to use proportional reasoning and scale to design a race course for the Speedbot. See the teacher version of the Robo Rally STEM Lab here.

V5 Build Recommended EXP Build Adaptations
Speedbot
speedbot.png
BaseBot
exp-basebot.png
  • Play: Measure the BaseBot to create the scale.
  • Rethink: No adaptations needed.

Robosoccer

Students are asked to build and utilize a robot to dribble a ball and iterate on its design. See the teacher version of the Robosoccer STEM Lab here.

V5 Build Recommended EXP Build Adaptations
Speedbot
speedbot.png
BaseBot
exp-basebot.png
  • Play: Use Buckyballs to create the course.
  • Rethink: A Buckyball can be used instead of a soccer ball to complete the challenge.

Medbot

Students are asked to program a robot to deliver medication to patients on a hospital floor that they create. See the teacher version of the Medbot STEM Lab here.

V5 Build Recommended EXP Build Adaptations
Speedbot
speedbot.png
BaseBot
exp-basebot.png

Momentum Alley

Students code a robot to knock down bowling pins using what they know about forces. See the teacher version of the Momentum Alley STEM Lab here.

V5 Build Recommended EXP Build Adaptations
Speedbot
speedbot.png
BaseBot
exp-basebot.png
  • Play: Use the BaseBot (Drivetrain 2-motor) Template in VEXcode EXP.
    • Screen_Shot_2022-01-17_at_3.43.57_PM.png
    • For VEXcode EXP related help, see this section of articles.
    • Coding with Blocks, Python, and C++ is available in VEXcode EXP and each can be used depending on your preferred coding method. 
  • Rethink:
    • Use a Buckyball for the ball.
    • Add a c-channel to the front of the robot to better collide with the Buckyball.
    • Screen_Shot_2022-01-17_at_4.03.56_PM.png

It's a Draw

Students will explore the Clawbot and using it as an artistic tool in a drawing game. See the teacher version of the It's a Draw STEM Lab here.

V5 Build Recommended EXP Build Adaptations
Clawbot
v5-build-02.png
Clawbot
exp-clawbot-good.png
  • Play: Use a similar rubber-band attachment for the marker placement. Or design a marker attachment piece using additional pieces in the EXP Kit.
  • Rethink: No adaptations needed.

Speedy Delivery

Students are asked to program a robot to navigate a warehouse and to prepare packages for delivery. See the teacher version of the Speedy Delivery STEM Lab here.

V5 Build Recommended EXP Build Adaptations
Clawbot
v5-build-02.png
Clawbot
exp-clawbot-good.png
  • Play: Use the Clawbot (Drivetrain 2-motor Drivetrain) Template in VEXcode EXP.
    • Screen_Shot_2022-01-18_at_11.17.09_AM.png
    • For VEXcode EXP related help, see this section of articles.
    • Coding with Blocks, Python, and C++ is available in VEXcode EXP and each can be used depending on your preferred coding method. 
  • Rethink:

Design By Request

Students will go through the engineering design process for an open-ended build activity. See the teacher version of the Design By Request STEM Lab here.

V5 Build Recommended EXP Build Adaptations
N/A. This is a custom build as part of the STEM Lab.

N/A. This is a custom build as part of the STEM Lab.

  • Seek: Complete this Seek section and explore the EXP Kit answering the same questions in the engineering notebook.
  • Play: No adaptations needed.
  • Rethink: No adaptations needed.

Loop, There It Is!

Students will learn how to program loops to get their robot grooving. See the teacher version of the Loop, There It Is! STEM Lab here.

V5 Build Recommended EXP Build Adaptations
Clawbot
v5-build-02.png
Clawbot
exp-clawbot-good.png

Gravity Rush

Students will explore the Clawbot and issues of center of gravity as they prepare for a race. See the teacher version of the Gravity Rush STEM Lab here.

V5 Build Recommended EXP Build Adaptations
Clawbot
v5-build-02.png
Clawbot
exp-clawbot-good.png
  • Play:
    • When raising the arm of the Clawbot, it may not meet the minimum height requirement in the Lab since the robot is smaller than the V5 Clawbot.
      • In the first angled arm test, it should be raised so it is parallel with the chassis.
      • In the near-vertical arm test, it should be raised to the highest possible position.
  • Rethink:
      • For the second round, the arm of the Clawbot should be raised so it is parallel with the chassis.
      • For the third round, the arm of the Clawbot should be raised so it is in the highest possible position.

To Do, or Not To Do

Students are asked to program their robot to act on conditionals. See the teacher version of the Loop, There It Is! STEM Lab here.

V5 Build Recommended EXP Build Adaptations
Clawbot
v5-build-02.png
Clawbot
exp-clawbot-good.png
  • Play:
    • The text in the Play section reference to pressing the Brain screen. The EXP Brain does not respond to touch, so this activity will use the buttons on the Brain.
    • Use the Clawbot (Drivetrain 2-motor Drivetrain) Template in VEXcode EXP.
      • Screen_Shot_2022-01-18_at_11.17.09_AM.png
    • Then create this project based on the one shown in the Lab. This can be used as the basis for the other project edits through the activity.
      • Screen_Shot_2022-01-18_at_12.51.40_PM.png
    • Add an additional [If then] block to add a second command for when the Left button is pressed on the Brain.
    • For VEXcode EXP related help, see this section of articles.
    • Coding with Blocks, Python, and C++ is available in VEXcode EXP and each can be used depending on your preferred coding method. 
  • Rethink:
    • Three buttons are available to be coded on the EXP Brain. Rather than the 4 buttons and commands, use these 3. 
      • A button for closing the claw
      • A button for raising the arm
      • A button for lowering the arm
    • When completing the challenge, students should be allowed to manually open the claw.
    • Use the steps in this article as your students develop their pseudocode.

Clawbot with Controller

Students will code the Controller to direct the Clawbot through several engaging challenges using the concept of loops. See the teacher version of the Clawbot with Controller STEM Lab here.

V5 Build Recommended EXP Build Adaptations
Clawbot
v5-build-02.png
Clawbot
exp-clawbot-good.png
  • Play:
    • Use the Tank Drive Control example project in VEXcode EXP.
      • Screen_Shot_2022-01-18_at_1.26.50_PM.png
    • For VEXcode EXP related help, see this section of articles.
    • Coding with Blocks, Python, and C++ is available in VEXcode EXP and each can be used depending on your preferred coding method. 
  • Rethink:
    • Use the Clawbot Controller with Events example project in VEXcode EXP.
      • Screen_Shot_2022-01-18_at_1.32.33_PM.png

Vision Sensor

Students will use the Vision Sensor to detect objects. See the teacher version of the Vision Sensor STEM Lab here.

V5 Build Recommended EXP Build Adaptations
Clawbot
v5-build-02.png
Clawbot
exp-clawbot-good.png
  • Seek:
    • Mount the Vision Sensor to the top of the Clawbot angled down towards the claw using angle gussets.
  • Play:
    • Use the Detecting Objects (Vision) example project in VEXcode EXP.
      • Screen_Shot_2022-01-18_at_1.40.57_PM.png
    • For VEXcode EXP related help, see this section of articles.
    • Coding with Blocks, Python, and C++ is available in VEXcode EXP and each can be used depending on your preferred coding method.
  • Rethink:
    • No adaptations needed.

Mechanical Advantage

Students will explore how mechanical advantages and gear ratios can be applied in their builds, daily lives, and in robotics competitions. See the teacher version of the Mechanical Advantage STEM Lab here.

Note: Because the EXP version does not have specific build instructions, this is a harder lab to complete. Students will need to determine the best way to adapt the instructions while building in order to make the EXP version. This is recommended for students who are advanced in engineering.

V5 Build Recommended EXP Build Adaptations

V5 Gear Box

GearBox.jpeg

Custom EXP Gear Box 

exp_gear_box_sample.jpg

Note: This is just one example of how to construct a gear box with the EXP Kit.

  • Seek: The EXP example on the left uses two 36-tooth gears and one 60-tooth gear rather than the three 60-tooth called for in the Build Instructions.
  • Play:
    • In the Applying Gears to this Build page, ensure that the correct gear sizes are used for the equation. In the sample provided to the left, the first gear is a 60-tooth meshed with a 12-tooth, but the other two are 36-tooth meshed with a 12-tooth.
    • Using this, the gear ratio would be a 5:1, 3:1, and 3:1. Making the compound gear ratio 45:1.
  • Rethink: No adaptations needed.

For more information, help, and tips, check out the many resources at VEX Professional Development Plus