Robotics Revolution

By Montessa Young
This is the fourth year that Washington County Extension will be supporting robotics programs through 4-H. We have teams competing in FIRST Lego League (grades 4-8) and FIRST Tech Challenge (grades 7-12) this year. The FIRST Lego League (FLL) competition requires a team of up to 10 students to research a real-world problem and develop a solution. They also design, build and program a robot using Lego Mindstorms to compete on a 4’ x 8’ competition table. This year’s theme is Animal Allies and focuses on how animals and people are allies in the quest to make life better for everyone. The project mission is to make our interactions with animals better. This will be a great topic for our rural 4-H’ers that have a lot of experience with animal interactions.
 
 The Cambridge FLL team is moving up to the 
FIRST Tech Challenge (FTC) competition where the robots are programmed using Java, built with metal instead of Legos and there is more of a focus on the engineering process. The FTC competition is played on a 10’ x10’ field and the robots can be driven with video game controllers for part of each round. This team started with robotics in the fifth grade and has been very successful in FLL. We really look forward to seeing them be successful at this next level of complexity.
Washington County Extension is in charge of the local qualifying tournament for FIRST Lego League. We will be hosting the tournament on Dec. 3rd at Payette Middle School. We hope you will volunteer to come help or be enthusiastic spectators.  For more information, please call our office at 414-0415.  

To see the entire University of Idaho Extension Washington County Autumn 2016 Newsletter, please call (208-414-0415) or stop by UI Extension Washington County (485 E. 3rd Street in Weiser).

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