Students take up the challenge of 'building a better world'

Published:06 November 2019

Townsville Grammar School students were among those who attended the annual FIRST® LEGO® League (FLL) challenge at CQUni Townsville.

School students reached new heights at the FIRST® LEGO® League City Shaper event, recently hosted by CQUniversity Townsville.

‘3, 2, 1…LEGO®!’ was the chant that could be heard down the halls of CQUniversity Townsville as students from 10 local schools attended the annual FIRST® LEGO® League (FLL) challenge, on 3 November.

Programing robots to weave through cityscapes, clear traffic jams and ride elevators to the top of skyrises - all using LEGO® - were just some of the missions attempted by teams during the competition.

Event organiser and CQUni Lecturer Dr Nathan Brooks-English explained that the students had been preparing for the competition over the past few months - integrating core values like teamwork and discovery with problem-solving, creativity and critical analysis to provide a comprehensive understanding of the design process.

“Not only did the students get hands-on experience in robotics, they engaged in science, technology and engineering using a tool they are already familiar with and that’s LEGO®.”

Challenged with the concept of ‘building a better world’, students considered what changes they would make to build a stronger, more sustainable future for their communities. Teams tackled issues in all three pillars from economic, environmental, and social concerns.

“We had some truly innovative concepts this year with students really considering the needs of their local community – from redesigning parkland to improvements on existing boat ramps.

“As the world becomes more complex and more challenging, it will be these students who design and carry out the solutions that address those issues,” said Dr Brooks-English.

With over 30 000 teams and over 325 000 participants worldwide, FLL inspires the next generation to consider a future in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) and provides opportunities for further development.

Townsville Grammar School continued to lead the field in FLL, taking out top spots in both the Robot Games and overall Champions Award for the third year in a row. The winning teams were rewarded with a LEGO® trophy and the opportunity to travel to Brisbane at the end of the month to compete in the Queensland State Championships.