Our first in-person since March

[One team’s experience, YMMV]

We met in-person for the first time since early March to give prospective members a hint of what the robot part of FIRST is about.
And a chance to be driver and button monkey.

Outside, ten people or fewer, social distanced, masked (and gloved at the driver’s station). We required a specific parental permission form for this activity.

Ames is a college town, and unfortunately the college students in town were doing the exact opposite of all those things. So I’m expecting the local situation will quickly take a big turn for the worse and we may not meet again in person again in 2020.

[EDIT] Also please note the “Derecho-proof” swiss-cheesing my daughter put in the portable goal we built :wink:


Good for your team! We’re still waiting for official word we can meet. If everything goes as I think it will, we’ll need to follow athletics protocol, which requires logging student temperatures and symptom questionnaires every day we meet. Fun.


I’m curious - was this drafted by the school you’re associated with or by the team? Wondering if we will eventually just have covid clauses as part of our regular club and activity waivers.

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We are a community (4H) team, so our meeting rules and permission form came from them.

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You get a like just for getting me to search Google for derecho.


Everyone in Iowa has recently become quite familiar with the term!


Derecho: Derechos: Widespread Convectively Induced Windstorms | Weather and Forecasting | American Meteorological Society

I had the pleasure of working in the same building and sometimes sharing lunch with Bob Johns for 20 years – he was a really good scientist and coined the modern term.


Well, that’s about as nicely as you could phrase that. I’m sure John has seen this on reddit, but for everyone else, this (nsfw language) was happening 1 mile from our meeting.


Just south of you @Zook, thinking the same thing. Our county is almost off the ‘watch list’… still not sure what that will get us. Sigh.

For my district, 14 days off watchlist means we go back at reduced capacity. I see SD is on day 3 of meeting watchlist removal. Fingers crossed your students will be allowed back in limited numbers.

Our district has made it VERY clear - distance learning through first quarter. No matter what the Governor says :disappointed_relieved:

Maybe after?

That’s pretty nice,I’m glad for your team. My team is waiting for our school to give us the go ahead to meet up. I’m looking forward to this upcoming season. Hope your team is staying safe.


Well, I think we’d happily trade you our Governor who is forcing in-person on the whole state regardless of facts.


:flushed: :flushed: :mask:

My wife started the school year in August distanced. Just like it ended. Then 3 weeks ago they switched to hybrid (Half students face to face Monday/Wednesday, and the other half Tuesday/Thursday, opposing Days are distanced learning). 4 long day school week. (At least for the students- she is 7 days and still does not have the time to keep up the doubled up workload, and teaches 2 still distanced community college courses also).

Going from nearly zero personal contacts since early March at school, even though she worked all Summer long it seemed, and went to about 150 personal contacts a week at school, and is on day 11 as of today, so far so good.

And, since they went Hybrid, the prohibition on No Clubs-Zero Robotics that they started out with in August, went right out the window.

So, FTC 14436, and FRC 60 are all hard at work. (The students were having personal contact all Spring and Summer anyway we have pretty much figured out).

Mask up folks, and be safe out there!
(Zoom is my new friend, an expert just educated me!) And I think the students really liked the fact that I cannot reach any of the team tools!

I also do not have to endlessly sort fasteners and put them away, or hunt down all those items we had all ready to load up, that others put away last Summer. (Floors needed to be stripped & polished, so moving things each Summer are a team duty).

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We’re going back hybrid Nov 2, half kids at in class, half on a Zoom call. We’re doing Mondays all periods, distance learning. Then 1,3,5 T/Th, and 2,4,6 W/F. Have a few weeks to get prepared. It’s going to be really weird having kids in my room and NOT being able to walk around and help them…

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We started the year with everyone 100% virtual thanks to the local college students sending our positivity rate through the roof (a “world record” 65.5%).

About 35% of kids are still 100% virtual by parental choice (including my daughter), but the rest are back on a 50%-in person, 50%-virtual schedule, block schedule, (so they see each teacher in-person, 1 day a week), Classrooms are about 1/3 full.

Impressive, but not the good kind.


We’re looking closer to 10-20% students on full distance learning, at least by my numbers. But we may be looking at about 1/3 of teachers at my school electing to stay at home (kids, at risk, etc.). It’s going to weird seeing classrooms being monitored by a staff member while kids are all on Zoom 6ft apart.

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Aaah yes, a very fulfilling educational experience/daycare.
It makes sense but hurts me so, so much inside.

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