The event was in preparation for the RRVEC Ultineers Fourth Invitational Tournament scheduled for 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday at The Centre on the campus of Halifax Community College in Weldon.
The tournament will feature a Weldon City Schools team along with squads from the districts of Halifax, Warren, Northampton, Bertie, and Hertford counties.
WMS Principal Andre Stewart noted the need for initiatives such as robotics for students. “It’s something other than a sport,” said the former high school football coach and athletic director.
Destiny Hopson, an eighth- grader at WMS, cited her career goal of becoming an architect as the reason for her joining the robotics team. “I love science, so I took the opportunity.”
Robot brains and Lego pieces were distributed to the teams as they designed and built a custom robot to perform complex tasks prior to the event. Students competed against each other by completing robot missions on a 4X8 table. They will have to do the same for Saturday’s tournament.
WMS science and math teacher Hillary Braden felt good about her team’s showing. “I think they navigated their strengths as a team. Now we know what we need to fix.”
“It’s a good way to get prepared for real competition,” added Hopson. “It showed us a lot.”
Like Braden, EMSA seventh-grader Desmond Johnson had good vibes following his team’s efforts. “The way we talked about our designs. I feel great about it,” said February’s Halifax County Schools Student of the Month.
Daria Johnson, STEM Instructor for Davie and Everetts Elementary STEM Academy, was grateful for all the parties who helped the scrimmage come to fruition, including the district and school administration and maintenance teams.
She also was impressed with the evolution of her team. “I’m pleased with the progress of my students in a short amount of time.”
“It’s truly inclusive,” EMSA Principal Teicher Patterson said of robotics. “This is an outstanding opportunity for our students, moving towards a world they don’t even know.”
From left, William R. Davie Middle and Everetts Elementary STEM instructor Daria Johnson, Davie Robotics assistant coach and Exceptional Children instructor Cameron Foster, and students Claude Solomon, Artez Johnson, and Semaj Pierce look on during last week’s scrimmage.