In May 2009 we began exploring affordable ways to make the arms of the puppets work robotically.  After several trials using different kinds of small motors, students from Youngstown City’s Chaney High School and Choffin Career and Technical Center under the guidance of their teachers have found a way to achieve this!  Many thanks to the students and to their teachers Mark Robinson, Carrie Sinkele and Kevin Sinkele.

We are especially grateful to Lego Education North America for their help and discount on products.  We received a 40% discount from Lego on a $5700 purchase of servos and other items for a total savings of $2280.  Special thanks to sales representative Ivery Toussant for making this savings possible.

Special thanks also goes out to computer expert Nick Kachmar.  Nick’s insight into shortcuts and possibilities of the Lego Mindstorms NXT 2.0 program together with the insights of Youngstown City Schools’ teacher Carrie Sinkele, has made it conceivable that the entire 32 minute We Have Poipus! Play can be made robotic and reproducible.  What seemed like an insurmountable amount of work, while still time consuming, now appears achievable.