HCCS robotics started a new program in the fall of 2012 for students in grades 4-8. Students worked with LEGO MINDSTORMS® robotics technology to build a robot with the goal of competing in a friendly, FIRST robotics event in the FIRST LEGO® League (FLL). Younger students participated in the Junior version of FLL.
The FLL mission is to “Inspire young people to be science and technology leaders by engaging them in exciting mentor-based programs that build science, engineering, and technology skills, inspire innovation and foster well-rounded life capabilities including self-confidence, communication and leadership.”
HCCS students were divided into three teams for our first season. They attended a regional competition at Queen’s University in December and two of the teams were awarded places at the Provincial East competition in January at UOIT in Oshawa. This was a remarkable achievement for two “rookie” teams in their first season of competition.
The Provincial East Competition in January was a wonderful learning experience as well. Students worked hard, displayed their skills and came home with a trophy for best project research.
FLL teams compete in three categories, all of which are equally important:
Robot Design – How well a team demonstrates its understanding of robot design through building, programming, and performance.
Core Values – How well a team demonstrates the integration of FLL core values in all aspects of the FLL experience.
Project – How well a team demonstrates its solution for a real-world problem, and the research behind its solution.
What is the project?
In the project, teams research a real-world problem in the field of the challenge theme, create an innovative solution and share their findings in their community.
FLL is not just about building and competing with robots. FLL encourages well-rounded teams because any successful engineering project requires a wide variety of skills.
The theme for the 2012 season was Senior Solutions. Teams were require to find senior partners (HCCS students interviewed numerous seniors at our Heritage Day), identify and learn about a problem faced by seniors, create an innovative solution to the problem, and share the problem and solution with others.
The theme for 2013 is Nature’s Fury in which students will investigate “super storms”.
What is the robot game?
In the robot game, teams design, build, program and test autonomous robots that perform a series of tasks, or missions within a two-and-a half minute time limit. The game and its missions symbolize solutions to some of the problems presented in the theme for the year. The playing field is a 4x8 mat that changes each year.
For more information you can visit: www.firstroboticscanada.org. To view more pictures of HCCS students preparing for the competition and at various events please visit our Facebook page: Heritage Community Christian School.
“What FLL Kids accomplish is nothing short of amazing. It’s fun. It’s exciting. And the skills they learn will last a lifetime.”