Local and area students gathered at the Genesee Valley BOCES Mount Morris last week for the First LEGO League (FLL) Qualifier Tournament. The competition tested each team’s ability to complete tasks using robots built from Legos. FLL was designed to engage youth through STEM learning and exploration. Students learned hands-on as they discovered, explored and challenged themselves to apply their skills in an exciting competition.
Students from Dansville, Keshequa, Oakfield-Alabama, Warsaw, and Wayland-Cohocton competed in three rounds of two and a half minutes each. The goal was to complete the most missions and collect the most points.
“The Genesee Valley Robotics program encourages students to practice real-life engineering skills, including computational thinking and iterative design. The social emotional impact of such a program is also important, as it helps many students make new connections with their school and their classmates, explained Steve Nole, enrichment services coordinator at Genesee Valley BOCES.
This event was attended by 60 students from grades 4 to 8. The first part of the day was the presentation part. During the presentation competition, the teams were evaluated in three specific areas, one of which was their innovation project, in which they had to identify and research a problem to solve around this year’s theme of clean energy solutions. Teams also had to present their robot design. They had to identify their mission strategy and design their robot and their programs to create an effective plan and finally came down to the core values where they had to apply teamwork and respect each other’s ideas and work together as a team on their specific challenge.
Ted Smith was the head judge for the competition and is Senior Crisis Intervention Specialist at Genesee Valley BOCES Mount Morris. Smith explained that he enjoys looking for a student’s interest and seeing if they had fun as part of the project. “Events like this are a wonderful opportunity for students to express their creativity, learn how to work in a team and think critically about a problem. These are all skills that they will need in their lifetime, so it’s good to be able to develop them at an event like this,” Smith explained.
Congratulations to the following teams for advancing to the next round:
The overall winners were the Oakfield-Alabama Hi-Tech Hornets. Wayland-Chocton Golden Eagles 2 was named a finalist. Both teams will head to the First Lego League Championship in Buffalo on February 18th. Teams were recognized for core values, innovation project, robot design, robot performance and a trainer/mentor award.
The top two teams, Oakfield-Alabama and Wayland-Cohocton, will advance to the championship competition. Genesee Valley BOCES is pleased that the event was a success and looks forward to hosting more FLL challenges in the future.
Oakfield-Alabama students are (yellow hair hats) left to right: Cameron Emerson, Lucas Bak, Connor Burgio, Carson Shelter. Nate Staebell is seated behind Carson (without the hat).
Wayland-Chocton 7th Class Ethan Bauer.
Hannah Sonricker, Levi Bennett, Warren Fox.