Texas students create environment-friendly robots - KTEN.com - Texoma news, weather and sports

Texas students create environment-friendly robots

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Students test out their robots (KTEN) Students test out their robots (KTEN)

DENISON, Texas -- Engineers from Sherman keep students interested in science, engineering and mathematics with a robotics program.

For the past five weeks, students across Texas have been building environmentally-friendly robots for  this year's competition.

"The main point of the competition is getting kids -- mostly middle school to high school age -- some experience with robotics," said Steven Nappo, a robotics coach from Farmersville High School. 

Nappo and his students have spent at least seventy-two hours in the last five weeks working to build their robot. 

"The idea behind our robot is similar to probably most other groups," he said, "We're trying to pick up these different bottles and cans and things which represent trash on the ocean floor." 

Boosting Engineering Science and Technology, better known as BEST Robotics, is hosting this year's competition, and they're providing a new challenge for the students. 

"It really allows students that don't feel like they're challenged enough in the classroom environment to  go above and beyond and really try and do their best even though it might not work," said Adam Schlamowitz, a robotics student at Legacy Preparatory Charter Academy. 

To gain points in the competition, the students had to come up with creative ways for their robots to fight high-pressure ocean currents to pick up the garbage, but that's not the only way they can win points. 

The students will also be judged on how well they incorporated STEM courses into their project. 

"With best, we try to keep students interested in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics all the way through high school," said Janne Ackerman, Executive Director for Collin County's BEST Robotics. "So that when they go to college, they can go and continue that as a career field."

The students have one week left to make final changes to their robots. Next week they will compete against 70 schools from around the state. 

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