Fun, problem-solving real goals of Kelowna, B.C. robot competition

Students from nine schools in School District 23 gathered for the ninth annual sumobot competition. Global News

On Thursday, several students from School District 23 gathered for the region’s annual sumobot tournament, where design, engineering and programming were the real winners.

While the goal of the tournament was to have students build a winning robot, the real purpose was to spark creativity.

“It’s about fun. It’s about putting your design to the test,” said sumobot organizer Tobias Blaskovits.

“There’s problem-solving. After battles, you have to fix your code or fix your robot, things like that.

The competition allowed students to team up to create and design their own robots to push the opposing robot out of the ring.

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Some students said one of the biggest takeaways from the challenge is how to use teamwork to bring their robot to life.

Click to play video: '‘There’s camaraderie, there’s collaboration’: Robotics tournament turns school kids into coders, engineers'
‘There’s camaraderie, there’s collaboration’: Robotics tournament turns school kids into coders, engineers

“What I noticed about my robot,” said student Brielle Cross, “is it’s really small, but it can really knock over a lot of people.

“And we’ve had a problem with how light our robot is because a lot of people are way heavier than ours, so they can knock it over easily.”

Cross said the team was having problems at first, but then “we just worked together and then somehow we built a really good robot.”

After missing one year because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the event returned for its ninth year this week.

In all, nine schools from School District 23 took part, with students ranging from grades 5 to 9.

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Okanagan students head to robotics competition

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