Hand: A roundup of rowdy robots
By Luci Hand Reasons to Read February 14, 2014 1:34PM
Updated: February 16, 2014 2:04AM
I don’t know a thing about robots. I know that they are used a lot in manufacturing and especial in dangerous jobs so that they are in effect, protecting humans.
Tedd Arnold brings us one use of a robot in “Fix this Mess!” We meet Jake as he is taking his new robot out of its box.
It is called Robug and does have a strong resemblance to a ladybug. When it states that it is ready, Jake tells it to “fix this mess.”
Robug states that it will do just that and goes to work. We see clouds of dust as it goes head first into the mess.
When the dust clears, we see that the mess is still there, it has just moved onto the end table. Jake is not happy.
Yet again, the order is given and Robug goes to work. Now the mess is simply moved to the bathroom. Then it’s on the roof and Jake wants it “put back.”
It is. Back to the original mess, and Jake is still ordering a clean up.
This time, Robug gives lots of cleaning tools to Jake and sits and watches Jake clean up. Even Robug loses patience.
This is a beginning reader that primary boys especially will love.
Another book for the beginning reader is “Robot Burp Head Smartypants!” by Annette Simon.
Inside the front cover is a challenge. “Are your gears turning? Then let’s count by tens!”
We go to 100. We then meet two robots, colorful and oiling themselves.
Then one burps. An apology follows as he claims to have a loose screw.
The burps keep coming and the other robot finds it funny. So ... a burping contest is the inevitable result.
We follow our two characters guzzling oil and burping numbers and letters as they really let loose with all kinds of sounds and noises. Out of oil, they both break down and rest.
We leave them with a challenge to try again, with no zoinks next time.
I’m always leery of recommending a book with experiments, but “Nick And Tesla’s Robot Army Rampage” by “Science Bob” Pflugelder and Steve Hockensmith is wonderful.
The story is great, and the experiments look spectacular. The first page begins with “Danger!” repeated four times in big blue letters over a notice that the experiments included in the book are to be done with the help of an adult.
It is a real disclaimer. Yet, I feel for a kid who is a science freak or a teacher looking for great projects for a science club, these are great.
Nick and Tesla’s parents have been sent overseas on a government project and they have been sent to their Uncle Newt’s house to stay. He is a mad scientist.
I wish I had the space to tell the whole adventure, but it kept me curious and had a solid ending.
If you would like to build a Wander-bot (with left over PC parts) or a Robo-Bug, a Robo-angel Hoverbot, or a Super-soaker Bot Blaster, this is the book for you.