Windsor youth to show off their skills in international Lego robotics competition

·2 min read
From left to right, McKinley Gallaway, Ava Pepper, Lachlan Gallaway, Adam Foglia and Evan Marier are competing in an international robotics competition known as the Lego League Virtual Open  Invitational. Their team is called the Brave Robots 3000 (Submitted by John Foglia - image credit)
From left to right, McKinley Gallaway, Ava Pepper, Lachlan Gallaway, Adam Foglia and Evan Marier are competing in an international robotics competition known as the Lego League Virtual Open Invitational. Their team is called the Brave Robots 3000 (Submitted by John Foglia - image credit)

Later this month, five kids from Windsor-Essex are taking on teams from more than 20 countries in a Lego robotics competition that is being held virtually due to the pandemic.

They are only one of three Canadian teams in their age group — nine to 14 — to qualify for the First Lego League Virtual Open Invitational.

The team, known as the Brave Robots 3000, will be participating on the heels of a winning a local competition, then finishing second in Ontario.

Two members of the team spoke with CBC Radio's Windsor Morning on Thursday to explain the competition, and tell us a bit about their Lego robot.

LISTEN | Hear more from these creative kids on CBC Radio's Windsor Morning:

The robot is about 30 centimetres long, and slightly shorter in height, explained team members Adam Foglia and McKinley Gallaway.

"We have motors, we have attachments and sensors. Something that our robot has is a forklift and it really helps for lifting, for pushing, pulling, and we also have a block dispenser for dropping blocks," said McKinley, 9, a Grade 4 student at Tecumseh Vista Academy.

The competition involves teams using code to make their robots complete tasks on a game board.

There's also an innovation project portion of the event, where the teams create a plan to tackle a real-world issue, explained 12-year-old Adam, a Grade 6 student at St. Rose Elementary School in Riverside.

The team's robot is shown in a screenshot from taken from a video.
The team's robot is shown in a screenshot from taken from a video.(Submitted by John Foglia.)

This year's theme is physical inactivity, so the team came up with a concept and story boards for an app.

The event starts on June 12 and the competition's finale is set for June 19.

"We've worked so hard and lots of stuff is on the line and we're just trying to prepare as much as we can to do a good job," Adam said.