Posted: Jan 3, 2013 10:03 PM by Morgan Frances - MFrances@kristv.com
Updated: Jan 3, 2013 11:33 PM
CORPUS CHRISTI - It's not often you'd spot a robot in a classroom but for some students at Moody High School, they've been perfecting two robots for months, now.
Jessica Diaz said, "Our teacher threw in some ideas, we brain stormed, we wrote everything down."
Jason Rodriguez continued, "Drawing them out, developing them and then constructing them."
The high schoolers left, today, for an intense back-to-back robotics competition in San Antonio. The challenge is called the VEX Robotics Competition and this year's theme is "Sack Attack."
"You got bean bags scattered around the floor, you gather them into your robot and deposit them into a trough," Rodriguez explained.
It sounds easy but Jason and 15 other students have spent well over 100 hours perfecting and creating their design. It's their hope that, this year, they can place first and move on to the state, maybe nationals and hopefully even the world championship level; at that stage, the kids are looking at some major scholarship money.
Tina Dellinger, Dean of STEM Instruction and Student Services, said, "It's just like any sporting event. These students go and they're able to showcase their talents in a competition just as they would if they were playing basketball, golf or running track. So they get as much satisfaction and self confidence built from participating in robotics as they would in any other activity at school."
Aside from the students gaining confidence and learning to work together, the class and competition has taught them more in science, technology, engineering and a whole lot in math.
Project "Lead the Way" Instructor, Romeo Valdez said, "These were fine machines. Really, fine machines. It's unbelievable what students come up with."
Valdez said his teams made it to the semifinals in their first year at the VEX Robotics Competition and since, this time, they had more of a "heads up" it's safe to say they're expecting great things.
"I expect to go to state this year," said Rodriguez while Diaz agreed saying, "I hope we get first ."
In addition to the competition in San Antonio tomorrow, the team plans to attend a local robotics competition on February 9th at the America Bank Center.
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