On Saturday, February 4th, the University of Pennsylvania’s GRASP Laboratory hosted its 7th annual FIRST® LEGO® League (FLL) Regional Championship.
The event included 47 FLL regional teams of middle school students competing to receive two spots at the FIRST World Festival in the spring.
This year, the global theme was Animal Allies, where teams explored the positive and negative interactions between animals and humans. The teams focused on three judging areas: Core Values, Project, and Robot Design.
Teams arrived early Saturday ready to celebrate their hard work and share what they had learned with everyone at the event: judges, parents, spectators, and other teams. Once the judging sessions ended in the afternoon, teams prepared for the Robot Game, which continued the Animal Allies theme. Teams showed off their autonomous robots as they completed a variety of tasks in three two-and-a-half minute rounds.
Music and team chants filled Irvine Auditorium as teams, families, and friends gathered to cheer on their teams and everyone else competing. Even though it is a competition, teams displayed that the goal is not to win, but to try their hardest and celebrate each other’s successes — practicing Coopertition® and Gracious Professionalism®.
In total, 32 awards were given out with only two teams qualifying for the World Festival in St. Louis where they will compete against 108 teams from around the world. The qualifying teams were 16080 JABOCK ROBOT and 17821 Bird SPA.
The GRASP Lab would like to thank the 100 volunteers that made this event possible. Volunteers came from Penn Engineering and the School of Veterinary Medicine, Central High School’s FIRST team the Robolancers, various companies in the Philadelphia region, and many other organizations.
To learn more about this Sport for the Mind™ and the FIRST LEGO League please visit www.firstinspires.org/robotics/fll