Students Exhibit Smart Transportation Models at the FIRST® LEGO® League India Contest

Team SAPBots comprising of students of Oxford school and Kumarans

BangaloreFIRST® LEGO® League (FLL) India, a robotics competition organized by Techtronics Education, was held today at the SAP Labs India campus situated at Whitefield, Bangalore. 18 teams comprising of children in the nine to 16 years age group participated in the event. Participants included children from schools such as National Public School, Oxford High School, Sudarshan Vidya Mandir, Cambridge School, Kumarans, Crystal House, Spastic Society of Karnataka and the government school from Devarabeesanahalli.

Team SAPBots comprising of students of Oxford school and Kumarans schools emerged winners for their monorail project while Team Invincible from Gurgaon were the runners-up.

This year’s Challenge – Smart Move – required children to focus on a very contextual and important issue facing the world today – safe and efficient transportation. The contest called for teams to research and present their own creative applications of solutions to improve people’s lives. After eight weeks of research and design, more than 200 children and mentors demonstrated their problem-solving skills, creative thinking, teamwork, competitive play, sportsmanship, and sense of community.

The event was organized by Techtronics Education, a company engaged in providing Robotics based hands-on learning solutions for children. Techtronics is the FLL operational partner in India.

SAP Labs India sponsored 16 teams that showcased their brilliance and came up with innovative designs to tackle real world problems. Also, 35 SAP Labs employees had been tutoring the students over a period of eight weeks to prepare them for the event.

“We are very excited and encouraged by the number of children who have participated in this event and hope to see it grow over the years to be the most exciting Robotics competition in India”, said Mr. Sudhanshu Sharma, CEO of Techtronics Education.

“SAP supports the FLL initiative globally. On the one hand, it provides a unique opportunity for employee volunteerism, and on the other, it helps foster interest in science and technology among the future generation,” said Kush Desai, Managing Director, SAP Labs India. “We encourage employees to actively participate in this initiative as coaches and mentors. These employees encourage the children to think out of the box, be creative and imaginative and to develop an early understanding of how science and technology can solve real-life problems. Through this competition, we trust the next generation will be better equipped to master the competitive challenges of the future.”

“FIRST LEGO League gives children a hands-on, real world experience allowing them to use their imaginations and creativity combined with science and technology to solve real world problems. This unique robotic completion has now got its first foothold in India, thanks to Techtronics – our official FLL Operational Partner – with whom we look forward to see FLL grow and spread throughout the country,” said Gerhard Bjerrum-Andersen, FLL program manager, LEGO Education (The LEGO Group).

FLL is an international program for 9 to 16 year-old children, created in a partnership between FIRST and The LEGO Group in 1998 based on their common belief that fun and learning go hand-in-hand, and that an inspired mind can accomplish anything. FLL is spread over 50 countries with 14,000 teams and 130,000 children participating in the event in 2009.

The FLL competition is judged in four areas: project presentation; robot performance; technical design and programming of the robot; and teamwork. The highest honor will go to the team that best exemplifies the spirit and values of the program.

“In solving the real world problems like transportation, FLL requires the children to apply the concepts of science, mathematics and environment studies that form a part of their curriculum, thereby reinforcing these concepts through application.” said Mr. Apurva Kalia, Chief Judge, FLL India.

Each September, FIRST announces the annual Challenge to teams, engaging them in authentic scientific research and hands-on robotics design. Using LEGO MINDSTORMS® bricks, motors, gears and software, children work alongside adult mentors to design, build, and program robots to solve real-world challenges. After eight intense weeks, the competition season culminates at a high-energy, sports-like tournament.

“FIRST LEGO League so brilliantly captures the natural curiosity and creativity of youth and combines it with real-world issues and research and teamwork activities that put children in a position to identifying and creating innovative solutions to big problems.” said Jens Maibom, LEGO Group vice president. “In this manner, FIRST LEGO League inspires children around the world to realize the power of their creative thinking skills in making a real difference, which naturally makes them feel good and motivates them to continue learning by doing.”

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