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Holbrook Primary students impress judges at new school robotics competition

PUBLISHED: 12:40 11 June 2016

Zara (L to R) Rose and Justine with their robot at the Roboclub competition at Holbrook Primary School.

Zara (L to R) Rose and Justine with their robot at the Roboclub competition at Holbrook Primary School.

The seasoned robot programmers at Holbrook Primary School have been passing down their skills to an even younger generation at an in-house competition.

The school’s robotics club, the DigiMinds, have competed nationally and internationally with great success in the past few years.

But with nothing official organised for the summer term they decided to create their own event.

Teacher Richard Williams arranged the group into nine pairs who then invited a younger student, new to the club, into their group to make three.

Mr Williams said the event on Tuesday was held along the lines of ‘Robots Have Got Talent’.

“Over the last eight weeks they have designed robots and built them themselves,” he said. “Some of them have worked on them at home and met up in the holidays.

“They also put together dances and costumes and props.”

The teams were judged not only on the ability of their robots to complete the task they were designed for (which the children got to choose) but also their ability to explain how they made decisions and overcame challenges during the build.

“What I have valued is the life skills they have learnt along the way,” Mr Williams added. “Everybody was impressed by what they managed to produce.

“What was most impressive was their ability to explain their reasoning.”

The competition was judged by Mr Williams, headteacher Annie Hookway, Eain Monteith from BT and David Spriggs from educational software company Purple Mash. The winners got a £15 book voucher each courtesy of Coes and a trophy made by students from One.

The winning team, Zara, Justine and Rose, scored 220 points out of 280 with their Pacman-inspired robot.

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