In an exhilarating day of competition on January 30, Sacred Heart’s 4th grade Robotics team won the STEM Award at the latest VEX-IQ Robotics Challenge held at Sacred Heart School in Saratoga.
The winning team was one of other five robotics teams, including an all-girls team, from Sacred Heart School representing 3rd through 6th grades. The 4th grade team has now qualified to compete at the Northern California State VEX-IQ Championship, February 26-27 at the Santa Clara County Fairgrounds.
Sacred Heart School’s VEX-IQ Robotics challenge is now the largest event of its kind in the state. Saint Simon’s School and Saint Mary’s School Los Gatos, also fielded very successful teams at the competition. Mr. Pulchny, Principal of Sacred Heart, handled the M.C. duties with Mr. Steve Rummell of Saint Simon’s. The two principals kept things moving, and added exciting commentary throughout the over 200 individual qualifying and final matches.
VEX-IQ is one of the largest competitive robotics programs with teams in 31 countries around the globe. Sacred Heart’s VEX-IQ Challenge Event was one of 85 such events held all over the world last month and made the top five in terms of number of competitive teams. In order to compete, each team has to maneuver a robot that they designed without parental or teacher help, and perform specific tasks in tandem with another competing team. Teams are also judged on the presentation of their design to a judge panel and gain points towards an overall score.
Rachel McKenna, Sacred Heart’s Science teacher, leads and supports the robotics teams. Additionally Debbie Salom, a parent at Sacred Heart School, helps coordinates the tournaments.