After weeks and weeks of mission, core values, and project, the day finally came! It was the regional competition, which all of us were excited about! We set up our pit area with our beautiful boards and had a fun and exciting opening ceremony.
15 minutes after the opening ceremony, we were called to go to our first judging session: core values. We had a project to do and some questions to answer. Everyone took turns and answered each question thoughtfully. After core values was finished, we had a long break until robot design! The team members each had a helping hand in debugging our robot and presenting our projects to the other teams. It was fun, and we even got to eat some snacks.
Then came robot design. We explained about our modular design and advanced programming. We showed the judges around the zones (groups of missions) and the modular attachments. The judges seemed especially interested in our P Controller line follower (resources can be found here).
Finally, it was time for the project! The explanation and skit for our Face Cards app was very clever. When we showed them our live copy, they gasped and were left speechless! Of course, there were some mistakes, but we finally won an award for 2nd place project. We dashed off to lunch and prepared ourselves for the actual robot game competition!
In our 1st match of the robot game, we scored 90 points. The new members of our team tried their best to handle and manage the robot. We spent even more time debugging the robot until match 2. The 2nd trial had a boost, with about 120 points scored! We fell behind to 11th place until the 3rd match, where we actually got 160 points, which gave us a boost to 5th place! And, while we were at it, everyone had loads of amazing fun.
During the awards ceremony, there was great suspense. Everyone in the bleachers listened intently. Team 2 got 2nd place in the project, while team 1 earned 1st place in the robot game with 301 points! Then we got a huge surprise. When the judges announced the overall award, they said “Team 318 – 3!” It was the biggest surprise – Our very own STEM Club team 1, dancing and winning the champion trophy!
Next Steps for the State Competition
Both teams were admitted to state. This means that we will improve in preparation for the greater competition in the NJ tournament! Teams 1 & 2 will debug and upgrade the robots. For the project, we hope to release Face Cards for free on the App Store between the regionals and the state. We have come a long way since our beginning in 2013, and we aim to improve and go further for the 2014 NJ competition.
Thanks for reading!