Robot challenge win

SEMATICS 101 team members Swetha, Yash, Luca, Jayden, Rithu and Lincoln. (Supplied)

Ash Bolt

A Geelong Lutheran College robotics team is bound for national competition following success at regional level in Werribee.

A group of Year 6 pupils , calling themselves SEMATICS 101, out-strategised all-comers to claim a string of awards at the Werribee Regional FIRST LEGO League robotics tournament last month.

“It’s been a journey this year with so many obstacles, but our team has stayed strong and I’m really happy that we get to go to nationals,” primary school captain and team member Swetha said.

“If we work hard enough international competition might be a possibility.

“Our coaches are amazing people and have taught us so many skills.”

Along with the champion’s award, the team claimed the accolade for robot performance, while teacher Jane Hollett was acknowledged for her contribution with the coach/mentor award.

“Our coaches have been amazing,” Swetha said.

“I’ve learnt how to document, engineer, design and program, I really wish more students would get into this as it’s really changed me.

“These are really helpful skills that I’ve learnt, maybe one day we’ll see some of become engineers, doctors or pilots, as a result of the things that we’ve learnt.”

Geelong Pack and Send franchisee James Dick worked with the pupils to provide guidance and feedback and was impressed by the pupils’ passion for problem solving.

“Logistics can be pretty dry, but also fun, and it seems that these students get it,” Mr Dick said.

“It was really interesting to observe the development from conceptualisation to the end product.

“The passion of the leadership was really impressive throughout, and I thought the students did a very good job, particularly given the tight time frame.”

For the competition, the pupils had to put their research, problem-solving, coding and engineering skills to the test by building and programming a LEGO robot that navigated the missions of a robot game

They will now get to compete at the national championships this weekend, along with another of the school’s teams, SEMATICS 102, which won the robot performance and robot design categories at the Bangholme regional competition earlier in the year.