Three dozen student teams from Massachusetts and New Hampshire will participate in the FIRST LEGO League Qualifier tournament at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) on Saturday, Dec. 1.
Teams composed of no more than 10 students between the ages of 9 and 14 will compete for the ability to participate in the state championship, RoboNautica, which will be held Dec. 15 in Harrington Auditorium at WPI. The event is part of the FIRST LEGO League competition.
Nicholas Galotti, a WPI alumnus and the event organizer, noted that FLL sets a different theme for students to embrace every year. This year’s is “Senior Solutions,” in which the students need to learn about problems facing senior citizens and find solutions to these problems. During the day they will present their solutions to judges.
For the competition, teams will build robots out of LEGOs. The robots, in turn, are required to complete several tasks, including gathering green medicine bottles while avoiding orange ones, making a video conference call, planting a garden, and helping with a quilt.
"This event is important because FLL introduces students to engineering problems at a young age through a fun and exciting LEGO robotics competition," said Galotti. "Through this process we are training bright minds early to solve the problems of today and tomorrow."
FIRST LEGO League Qualifier; FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) was created by Segway entrepreneur Dean Kamen, who attended WPI.
This year’s theme is called “Senior Solutions,” where students need to learn about problems facing senior citizens and then find solutions to these problems.
36 student teams from Massachusetts (Acton, Ayer, Chelmsford, Clinton, Cohasset, Douglas, Dover, Medfield, Leominster, Lunenburg, West Newbury, Natick, North Attleborough, Northborough, Shirley, Sutton, Tyngsboro, Monson, Winchester, Worcester) and New Hampshire (Dover and Pelham) will participate.
Saturday, Dec. 1, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Worcester Polytechnic Institute, Campus Center Odeum, Worcester, Mass.
Free and open to the public