TechnoQueens girls team also advances to World Competition
In the world of First Lego League robotics, Jericho’s RoboFalcons and TechnoQueens continue to roll on in applying their knowledge of the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) curriculum. Both squads did well in the first pair of First Lego League (FLL) competitions of the year—the Jr. FLL Expo in Mineola and the SBPLI Long Island FLL Championship in Longwood. The RoboFalcons will be advancing to the FLL Championship that is being held in Arkansas from May 17 through 20, where they’ll join 72 other teams from across the country as well as teams coming in from 19 other countries around the world. It was a proud moment for parent/coach Rohit Bhatia, whose son has been part of this Jericho Middle School team since it was founded four years ago.
“The RoboFalcons did very well in all aspects of Robot Score, technical judging and team values. Most importantly, they got an award on their Project Solution. In addition to winning the Championship award for ‘Innovative Solution, the team was also presented with opportunity to present their innovative solution to FIRST ‘Global Innovation Award’ forum which selects the world-wide winners,” Bhatia explained. “The boys built the prototype with a thermal sensor that includes Raspberry Pi. They also created a mobile app (using MIT Scratch programming) and connected the phone via a Bluetooth socket to Raspberry Pi. They were able to demonstrate the change in values (depicting contamination) and display it instantly on the mobile app. It was quite an accomplishment and they did this themselves with hands-on learning. They also designed a 3D printer-based sphere model of their Aqua Bot.”
Consisting of six girls from Jackson and Cantiague elementary schools, the TechnoQueens also fared well. They will be presenting their project at the World Expo in Detroit from April 26 through 28. It’s a rather lofty accomplishment given that the 60 teams going to this event were whittled down from upwards of 14,000 international teams that petitioned to be part of the Jr. World Expo. Jr FLL Girls Team.
“The TechnoQueens presented and explained Vill-Aquatec, their project and model made out of Legos that explains how to bring clean water to remote villages around the world through various technologies,” Bhatia said. “They impressed the judges with their presentations and excitement and also won the Explosive Ideas Award. I’m very proud of them.”
On a side note, a fundraising campaign team members have been working on with WaterAid has raised about $2,700 aimed at getting clean water to the Llano Verde School in Nicaragua. Not surprisingly, the students are proud of this accomplishment and have received major kudos from the WaterAid team. Beyond the kind words these students are receiving, Bhatia feels these kinds of projects are a major pathway towards a brighter future.
“I work as a director in the city and we go about hiring people from Ivy League schools and other colleges who are millennials, and the biggest challenge is finding applicants able to have a conversation, interact with others and work with people,” he explained. “This is kind of a springboard for these kids, especially after they graduate from college and have to go out into the world and get a job. When you’re working at a business, teamwork is key because everyone is pulling in the same direction for a common goal of success.”