Kids battle it out – one robot at a time
If you have a budding little scientist who drives you up the wall tinkering with all the electronic gadgets at home, hoping to make them ‘come alive’, then the Asia Pacific Youth Robotics Competition (APYRC) may just be the event that you need to take note of. Read to find out what went on during the APYRC Winter Games last month – and take a first look at the robots that the young participants built using various robotics platforms.
The APYRC was officially launched last year by In3Labs Pte Ltd, a local Singapore company that specialises in innovative teaching and learning solutions in the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (S.T.E.M). Typically held twice a year, the APYRC Winter Games took place on 19 November 2013 at the MDIS campus.
The competition saw many students from various prinary and secondary schools in Singapore coming together to compete in various robotic game segments. In teams of 2, the young participants showcased their creativity by coming up with innovative solutions for the 6 robotic challenges which include Flying Fox, Line Tracing, Sumo, Team Fortress, Transporter and Tug of War.
All teams put forth their best efforts, and even Dr Ben Lim, Head of the School of Engineering at MDIS was impressed by the outcome. With robotics being incorporated in most of the engineering programmes at MDIS, Dr Lim commented that having the robotics competition on campus presented an opportunity for MDIS to promote the concept of applied learning, where theories and concepts leant in the classroom are used to create solutions in real life.
This year’s APYRC Winter Games featured a new Creative Challenge. More details about this segment during the APYRC robotics competition for kids on page 2…
Creative Challenge: A new segment
To take the competition to a whole new level, a new ‘Creative Challenge’ segment was added. Participants who took part in this challenge were required to build a robot based on the theme ‘humanoid’ – which meant that the robots must have a certain degree of human elements.
To make things even more exciting, the theme of the Creative Challenge segment was only revealed on the day of the competition. Participants had a mere 2 hours to build and programme their robots.
The winning teams from Innova Primary School and Admiralty Secondary School share with us the inspiration behind their creations:
“We’ve basically built a robot that can be used to defend the country with ‘shooters’ as the robot’s hands. We’ve always enjoyed building things with Lego, but there is still lots of be learnt. Our next step is to gain a better understanding about programming and learn how to use the sensors.” Lim Yan Tao and Ethan Cheong, Innova Primary School
“We had to make do with a limited number of LEGO parts to create a ‘human robot’ for the Creative Challenge. So, what we did was to shape the eyes with the Lego parts instead of using the ultrasonic sensors. Long axles were used to support the arms and legs so that our robotic creation will be able to move. It was really just a simple ‘human robot’ design that we came up with together – we were surprised that our robotic creation was picked as the champion.” Thomas Toh Bo Wen and Chua Shu Hong, Admiralty Secondary School
Find out which schools were crowned as the winners, and how you can register your kids for robotics workshops at In3Labs in 2014.
The beginnings of a bright future
Telok Kurau Primary School and Admiralty Secondary School were crowned as the best performing schools overall, with the highest number of students acing the various challenges during the competition.
And with so much potential revealed, and waiting to be unravelled from bright young students, Ayesha Khanna, CEO of Urban Intel, a leading online and mobile training company based in Singapore, concluded the competition with a speech about how technology and data will be at the core of almost every job available in the future, with robots taking centre stage in schools and workplaces.
Register now for robotics workshops in 2014!
Will your child be the next great scientist who will come up with inventions that make the world a better place? Stay tuned for details for the next APYRC Summer Games, set to take place in June 2014. In the meantime, why not give your little ones a head start by registering them for robotics classes and workshops conducted by In3Labs?
Be sure to ‘Like’ In3Labs on Facebook to stay updated on their latest courses and workshops throughout the year!