The Loop Newspaper - Tehachapi's Online Community News & Entertainment Guide

By Joanne Woolf
Parent, coach, mentor 

Local LEGO robotics team advances


November 23, 2019

Photo provided

Congratulations to the 2019 Tehachapi Turbines of Valley Oaks Charter School Tehachapi for their hard work this season!

They competed at the High Desert LEGO Tournament (HDLT) on Oct. 19 and came home with the first place Project Research Award and fifth place in the Robot Game. On Nov. 9, among 18 teams competing at the 2019 Antelope Valley Techno Classic (AVTC) Qualifying Tournament, they won fifth place in the Robot Game, first place in Robot Design and earned one of only four spots inviting them to compete in the Los Angeles Regional Championship Tournament to be held next month.

FIRST Lego League encourages students to be well-rounded and places equal emphasis and importance on the robot game, research project, robot design and core values (teamwork). Excellence in all areas are required in order for a team to advance to the championships.

This year, the Tehachapi Turbines researched issues in their hometown under the FLL theme of City Shapers, and found that there are several places that have accessibility issues. The city recently did a self-evaluation, "The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Self-Evaluation and Transition Plan," which the students are using along with site visits to rate the accessibility of local businesses on the free app iAccess Life. That way, people with mobility issues and their caregivers can check out the app before going out so they can anticipate any accessibility problems they may encounter. The students found the already existing app, but it had no data for the city of Tehachapi. They hope that this information will be helpful to those who need it. They also encourage others to rate local places on the app. In addition, they reached out to Google Reviews to ask if an accessibility rating can be added to it in the future, since it is such a highly used and visible app.

Thanks to World Wind & Solar (WWS) for helping the kids with their initial research, and thanks to the parents, coaches and mentors for their time and dedication to the kids.

Thank you to our sponsors U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) and ASB Avionics.

Special thanks to Jay Schlosser, Development Services Director of the City of Tehachapi for his help with the research project.

Students in the 2019 Tehachapi Turbines include: Eliza Lytle, Amber McNutt, Milo Pack, Wyatt Ruebush, William Small, Leeland Stauffer, Kody Whatmough and Warren Woolf.


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