The Angry Nerds, the TGS Robotics team, entered their second year of competition with high hopes. The team – Jack, Nico, Nick, Taylor, Annika, and Camper – met every Wednesday as well as many days after school as the competition drew closer. “It was a lot of fun getting to learn and code the robot,” said Taylor. The robotics competition does not just involve building a robot to complete a series of tasks. Teams are also scored on core values such as teamwork and respect. They also must create and present an innovative solution to a real-world problem. This year’s theme was the Water Cycle, so the team created a system of rain barrels that repurposed the collected water. (This presentation also won first place in the Waccamaw Conference poster contest run by Riverkeepers.)
After scoring in the top 30% of teams in the regional competition in December, the Angry Nerds qualified for the First LEGO League East State championships, which took place on Feb. 10. “We were so stressed,” Camper laughed. While the Angry Nerds did not place in the state competition, they were awarded the trophy Against All Odds. That award recognizes a team who performed exceptionally well without the years of experience of other teams. “We accomplished a lot, despite being a second-year team, having two people out, and not having as many materials as other teams,” said team coach Mrs. Crosby.
This week, the middle school Robotics team received a grant from the Elks Lodge to finance the building of next year’s robot. The 8th graders on the team will not be eligible to participate next year, but the Robotics team will still be going strong. We wish them luck with their new robot next year!