The Roboteers, a Hilo-based robotics team comprised of eight homeschooled students, exceeded all expectations at the Hawaii State First Lego League (FLL) robotics tournament held in Honolulu on Dec. 7, where they placed second overall in the research category and eighth out of 48 teams in the exciting FLL Robot Competition.
While much of the competition consisted of confidential team interviews with panels of judges, the Robot Competition was open to the public and drew hundreds of cheering spectators and media attention to the Neil S. Blaisdell Exhibition Hall.
The Roboteers had been selected as one of two teams to represent the East Hawaii District after a stellar performance at the district-level tournament on Nov. 2, where the group won both the Robot Design and Robot Performance Awards. They are coached by Sylvi Cook.
FLL is a robotics program for 9- to-14-year-olds. It is designed to get children excited about science and technology, and teach them important employment and life skills. Students participating in FLL learn valuable skills, including research, presentation, public speaking, engineering and design, mathematics and teamwork, as they collaborate to prepare their projects and build and program their Lego robots to perform various tasks.