In March, 5 teams from Napoleon Community Schools competed in a qualifying event for the World Robofest Championship. This year’s competition had added emphasis on Computer Science. The teams had to build an autonomous (no controller) robot to create a pattern representing a binary number. Binary is the system of 1’s and 0’s computers use to communicate with each other and process data.
Two Napoleon teams, Team Kyle (Zack Taylor-12, Trevor Jarvis-10, and Eric Nordan-9) and Team BotBuilders (Thomas Hays-7 and Ethan Hays-5) ranked high enough to qualify for the World Championship. The World Championship is a very competitive event, with the top teams from China, Ghana, Mexico, and several other countries competing. This is the second year in a row that the Napoleon Robotics team has competed at the World Championship. The World Championship will be held on Saturday, May 18 at Lawrence Tech University
The Napoleon Bridge Building teams also recently went to competition. Each year, MDOT hosts a bridge building competition in Grand Rapids. Bridges follow a set theme each year and must be built out of balsa wood and kite string. Thousands of teams from across the state try to qualify for this event. Only the top 300 teams (100/age group) are invited to compete in this event. Teams that compete at this event are among the top of engineering students in country. Seven of 18 teams that will compete at the National competition in Utah were competing in Grand Rapids.
Five teams (1 7/8th grade team and 4 9/10th grade teams) were selected to compete. Of these teams, the middle school team finished in 20th place out of 100 teams and 3 of the high school teams finished in the top 20 (11th, 15th, and 19th). The average weight held by Napoleon teams was close to 90 pound.
All members of the Napoleon community are invited to a STEM Showcase on Wednesday May 15th at 5:30 in the high school cafeteria. At this event, we will test the bridges one more time to see if they can hold over 100 pounds or even beat the competition high score of 300 pounds. We will also feature live demonstrations of our World Championship bound robotics teams before they go to competition. Teams are VERY excited to show off all of the amazing things they have worked so hard this year to create. We hope to see as many people as possible at this event.