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Sarasota News Leader March 22, 2013 Page 56 Six weeks earlier, youth all over the world re- zil, Massachusetts, Germany and elsewhere ceived the specifications for the machine they competed against the regional teams. had to build, along with details about the naTeams from all over the globe will be at the ture of the competition. Nationals ��� as will the Sarasota team, Jungle In Orlando, creativity was the order of the day Robotics, as reported last week in The Saraas a myriad of approaches to solving the chal- sota News Leader. The local team won the lenges created entertainment ��� and amaze- prestigious Chairman���s Award, the highest ment. Observers watched as a multitude of regional honor a team can earn. This automachines literally ran around ��� some throw- matically sends the members to the National ing discs, others climbing ��� to see which Robotics competition in St. Louis on April 24. dominated or devastatingly failed. The rules were complex, with different slots worth dif- The Chairman���s Award recognized the local ferent points for sailing the Frisbees through; team���s efforts in promoting science, technolthe distances for the throws added more vari- ogy, engineering and mathematics ��� referred ations to the point mix. Defense and offense to as STEM, and a key component of planning of the opposing teams came into play as well. and discussions regarding the future of eduSuffice it to say the screams of the crowd usu- cation. ally were the best way to judge who was win- The local team made presentations at Saraning. sota County schools and engaged in a variIn this regional competition in Orlando, 62 ety of community promotions and charitable teams were present. Most were from Florida, projects aimed at enhancing awareness of the but some from the Dominican Republic, Bra- robotics program, particularly in the schools. Most of the students met after school four or five days a week, and all day on Saturdays, to build and rebuild and program and repair their ���baby.��� Photo by Scott Proffitt

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