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La Jolla, California


Posted on Nov 08, 2012

The Gillispie School Salutes Parent John Otterson, Leader Extraordinaire, For Facilitating A Robotics Team Comprised of Gillispie Students

November 8, 2012

Although challenged with a bit of a late start, the Pyro Geckos have been attacking the First Lego League Senior Challenge with rigor! The First Lego League (FLL) is a robotics competition centered on Lego Mindstorm robotics that challenges teams to think about how technology can solve real world problems.

Held each fall, FLL is an amazing experience. The Pyro Geckos have learned about teamwork, robot design and programming, as well as research and marketing. The program aims to engage students in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) by harnessing the fun of a game-based robotics tournament. Focusing efforts around the year’s theme, The Senior Challenge, teams are asked to research issues and suggest technology-based solutions. This is done with limited coach input beyond directional guidance!

As a result of their research and first-hand interviews, the Pyro Geckos have conceived of a smartphone app, ForgetMeNot!, to help seniors track important items such as glasses, keys, wallets, and the like.

The Pyro Geckos are Bella and William O., Casey and Aiden H., Justin and Julian T., Jackson L., Ethan G., Tristan L., and Jake B. They began with weekly meet-ups that quickly stepped up in frequency. This week they met at least four times as they head to their first qualifying tournament in Anaheim on Saturday, November 10. If successful, this rookie team may have more tournaments in December. Regardless, of course, you can guess the other stop in Anaheim they will make the day after . . .

John Otterson                                                                     

Gillispie Parent

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