Richland’s team of Grade 6 and 7 students recently competed in the First Lego League Competition. In their rookie year, the team of six students, 4 of which are ESL learners, were selected to go to the provincial competition in January. They competed against 18 other schools, many with much more experience. They were also the honoured recipients of the Judges Award, given in recognition of their core values and effective solution.
The Trash Trek Challenge involved the use of robots created with Lego Mindstorms to solve real-world problems. The problem the team chose to tackle was microbeads. Through inquiry learning, they determined that microbeads are too small to be captured by the current wastewater treatment facilities in Canada where they eventually end up in our Great Lakes. Our students have been building on their knowledge of waxworms and their potential to degrade plastic. Their innovative solution lies along the lines of employing these waxworm gut bacteria within the nutrient removal stage of the wastewater treatment facility, in order to degrade the microbeads. Richland’s solution impressed the judges;
“I was astonished at how far they progressed in such a short period of time. It was fantastic to see them and how competent and knowledgeable they were. You should be very proud of them.” Paul Keenan, FIRST Senior Mentor
FIRST is a non-profit organization that is dedicated to getting kids excited about science and technology. FIRST partnered with Lego in 1998, and the tournament has grown to include more than 233,000 kids in approximately 80 countries around the world.