Wichita State News

WSU to host LEGO Mindstorms Challenge for ninth year

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

The colleges of education and engineering at Wichita State University will host the ninth annual LEGO Mindstorms Robotics Challenge from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 21, at the Heskett Center gymnasium. An awards ceremony follows at 5 p.m. in 208 Hubbard Hall.

The event, funded by Spirit AeroSystems, provides young students with the opportunity for practical application and exhibition of math, science, programming and engineering skills, as well as promoting teamwork, dedication and sportsmanship.

Teams of fourth- through eighth-grade students from across Kansas will complete mission challenges designed by College of Engineering students and demonstrate what they have learned to an audience that includes professional engineers and educators, industry representatives, families, friends and members of the community.

Oral presentations, table displays and notebooks require students to document and articulate what they learned and the process their team completed to prepare for the challenge.

Sportsmanship and spirit are judged throughout the day to promote collaboration and teamwork.

The Mindstorms Challenge provides teachers an opportunity to showcase what they learned in WSU classes and workshops, and how they use robotics to teach science, technology, engineering and math concepts to their students.

It also provides an environment in which they can share and collaborate with other educators and professional engineers.

This year, organizers expect about 40 teams, almost double the participation in previous years.

Teams will be from such diverse Kansas communities as Andover, Belle Plaine, Canton-Galva, Cheney, Derby, Goessel, Colwich, Lyons and Wichita.

Many of the coaches who bring teams to the Mindstorms Challenge received training through robotics courses taught by WSU’s College of Education and received start-up equipment from funding provided by Boeing Charitable Trust and Spirit AeroSystems grants.

For more information about LEGO Mindstorms Challenge, visit the Web site at www.wichita.edu/shockermindstorms/.

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Created on Tuesday, February 03, 2009; Last modified on Wednesday, February 04, 2009