Building Robots at School

June 22, 2009

A NEW Blog Post!

Filed under: Uncategorized — dtengineering @ 9:28 pm

It’s been a busy year in the robot world, and I don’t have nearly enough time to write about it all here.  The real highlights of the season for me have been the explosive growth that we have seen in the VEX community here in BC, integrating VEX competition into my Engineering 11 curriculum and seeing our FRC team come together after losing many of our team leaders to graduation last year and putting together not just a competitive robot, but a top quality team.  In the process we managed to pick up a few awards, winning an FRC award for the fifth consecutive year.  Anyone who thinks that is easy is welcome to give it a try!  We have yet to win a Championship, but in some ways I am equally pleased with having this level of consistancy… this year brought our third straight trip to Saturday afternoon playoff competition and if we keep going at this rate it is only a matter of time until the pieces fall into place for a championship run.

Our VEX teams, for instance, had their first brush with top spot, with one team being on the winning alliance at the Vancouver VEX Competition and then following up by allying with two other 1346 teams to take home all the Championship hardware from the Vancouver Island VEX tournament in Courtenay.  Unfortunately we were unable to attend the VEX World Championships in Dallas due to financial reasons, as we are saving our pennies for next year’s FRC season.

Even our FTC team brought home some hardware, picking up the Motivate award at the BC FTC Championships.  I’ve never judged the success of a season based on the trophies but rather on the impact the program has had on the kids.  Behind the competitive success there have been several far more important educational and personal successes for our students.  The most memorable quote from a team member for me, this year, was “Who would want to live here?  Where do they get their FOOD?” from one of my actually quite bright students as we drove in to Courtenay for the Vancouver Island VEX tournament.  It reminds me that even if we hadn’t brought our robots along, we would have achieved several important educational goals just by getting some of these kids out of “the city” for a while!

Photos from some of the tournaments are posted online at http://s475.photobucket.com/albums/rr113/dtengineering/ and at the award winning Trobotics website, www.trobotics.ca.

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