Students from Charles County Public elementary and middle schools competed in the 2012 College of Southern Maryland Junior Division Robotics Challenge held Saturday, April 14, at the La Plata campus. The annual event is part of CSM's Institute of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (iSTEM), which provides programs to encourage students to pursue careers in STEM fields.
Fifty-two teams from 28 schools in Calvert, Charles and St. Mary's counties, as well as local private schools, competed in the event. A separate event for high school teams was held last month. This year's competition was the First LEGO League (FLL) challenge, titled "Body Forward," and required teams to build and program robots that would simulate elements of biotechnology research.
Four Charles County teams earned awards at the event. A team from Matthew Henson Middle School, Team 2, received the Project Award. This award is sponsored by SAIC and is given to the team whose research, solutions and creative presentation best reflects an understanding of the scientific disciplines and issues involved with the challenge project. Team members are Austin Edmonds, seventh grade, and Makayla Etheredge, sixth grade, and coach is Amy Graves, a science teacher at Henson.
The Picco Prime team from Piccowaxen Middle School received the Community Award. This award is sponsored by the Wyle AeroSpace Group and is given to the team that displays the best community partnership throughout their project. Team members are sixth graders Garrett Cooksey, Trevor Earnshaw, Tre Gianninni, Jordan Sinclair and seventh grader Mya Harding. Team coach is Brian Colaizzi, science teacher at Piccowaxen.
A team from Gale-Bailey Elementary School received the Team Spirit Award. This award is sponsored by The Patuxent Partnership and is given to the team that best represents enthusiasm and a commitment to learning about science and technology. Team members are third graders Eli Guzzone, Madison Kavlick, Aniyah Langhorne and John Mabry, and fourth graders Emily Lane and Khloe Sedlak. Team coach is Meredith Jones, special education teacher at Gale-Bailey.
The Lego Surgeons team from T.C. Martin Elementary School received the Teamwork Award. Sponsored by Navmar Applied Sciences Corporation (NASC), this award is presented to the team that best demonstrates extraordinary enthusiasm, an exceptional partnership and excellent teamwork. Team members are fifth graders Chito Del Rosario, Billy Goodnow, Ashley Kress, Mason Weiss, Patrick West and Zachary Youmans. Team coaches are Constance Sorzano and Sarah Cavegn, instructional assistants at Martin.
For more information about the challenge, visit the College of Southern Maryland's Web site at http://www.csmd.edu/roboticschallenge/.
Charles County Public Schools provides 26,700 students in grades prekindergarten through 12 with an academically challenging education. Located in Southern Maryland, Charles County Public Schools has 35 caring community schools that offer a technological advanced, progressive and high quality education that builds character, equips for leadership and prepares students for life, careers and higher education.
The Charles County public school system does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, age or disability in its programs, activities or employment practices. For inquiries, please contact Dr. Patricia Vaira, Title IX Coordinator and Section 504 Coordinator (students), or Keith Hettel, Section 504 Coordinator (employees/adults), at Charles County Public Schools, Jesse L. Starkey Administration Building, P.O. Box 2770, La Plata, Maryland 20646; (301) 932-6610/870-3814. For special accommodations call (301) 934-7230 or TDD 1-800-735-2258 two weeks prior to the event.