MCS holds middle school robotics competition

On May 12, the school district’s middle school robotics teams competed at Pinecrest High School, showing off their coding and engineering skills. More than 60 students represented each middle school, including the Connect! Virtual Academy, announced the school district in a press release.

The competition is a culmination of months of preparation and practice. Unlike the elementary showcase, teams were scored on their ability to accomplish tasks using multiple robots and customized attachments of their design. Student teams had to program their bots to recognize and react to colors, detect proximity to other objects, and make precise movements to earn points across more than 15 challenges.

Robotics and STEM programs frame classroom math and science concepts into real-world, practical applications. Students employ geometry, algebra, physics, and logic to achieve outcomes utilizing the robot as a tool. Equally important, student teams must work on their communication, collaboration, critical thinking, and creativity skills under pressure; skills that translate to any work setting.

Four trophies were awarded for outstanding play during the competition. West Pine Middle School’s “KPJC” took home the Sportsmanship Award for staying positive and communicating well despite the day’s challenges. The “Bootleg Bell Peppers” of New Century Middle School earned the Engineering Award for designing a creative, efficient robot attachment to complete a task. The “Nutty Buddies” from Elise Middle School won the fan-favorite Sumo Bot trophy for winning the battlebot tournament.

The 2023 all-around champions and winner of the Corrine Walls trophy were the students of Westmoore Elementary School’s “Divide, Code, and Conquer,” made up of Joseangel Vargas, Efren Salgado Zamora, Coyi Atkinson, Henry Debray, and led by coaches Kristin Baptista and Katherine Slate.

Feature photo: (L to R): Coach Kristin Baptista, Joseangel Vargas, Efren Salgado Zamora, Coyi Atkinson, Henry Debray, and coach Katherine Slate from Westmoore Elementary School with the Corrine Walls middle school robotics trophy.

Courtesy photo/Contributed.

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