Bath Elementary students explore robotics

Published 6:59 pm Friday, August 12, 2016

BATH — Bath Elementary School students are trying their hand at robotics and preparing for an upcoming competition in April.

As part of the CyberKids Robotics program, two teams of eight fifth-graders each will compete in a 2.5-minute time frame to complete challenges and accumulate points.

Students build LEGO robots by following a design, and then adjust measurements to allow the robots to complete certain tasks, such as retrieving blocks. This year’s theme is “Animal Allies,” and the teams must also prepare a five-minute oral presentation about the relationship between humans and animals.

TEAMWORK: Gavin Moore works on his team’s LEGO robot with some help from teammate Audrey Armstrong.

TEAMWORK: Gavin Moore works on his team’s LEGO robot with some help from teammate Audrey Armstrong.

Along with afterschool work, representatives from CyberKids Robotics will visit the school for 14 practice sessions throughout the next several months. The students also attended a four-day summer camp this month with CyberKids Robotics’ Bill Kent, who visited to work with the students and coaches Kelli Taylor and Kaelin Jewell.

“Students learn teamwork as well as math, science, computer programming and critical thinking skills in a fun environment,” the CyberKids website states.

Bath Elementary Principal Brian Swain said the school district extended the offer to any schools that wanted to participate in the program, and he felt it was a good opportunity for the students.

“It’s a learning activity working on their science and math,” he said.

The program is funded by a matching grant, meaning half of the cost is covered by Beaufort County Schools and the other half is covered by grant money, Kent said. CyberKids provides the computers, LEGOs, software and coaching.

Swain said teachers selected some of their top students in June and asked them first if they would like to participate in the program.

He said the students have enjoyed the activities so far during the summer camp, and they will continue to prepare for April’s RoboBeaufort Robotics Competition.