Breakfast with Santa at Forest Park High School
Each year Forest Park High School transforms into the North Pole as part of the school’s annual Breakfast with Santa event. The event is aimed at local families and allows them to come out eat pancakes, meet Santa and Mrs. Claus, make gingerbread houses, do various crafts and play games with his elves.
The Robotics Team fully supports this annual event and has built Sleigh-Bots and Reindeer games as part of interactive stations where the children get to drive the different robots, and learn more about STEM all while having fun.
VRC 4303 team members participated in the construction, decoration, and the event itself, and provided a powerful opportunity showcase what robotics is in Prince William County. The robots were one of the most popular activities at the entire event, and all the children grinned with excitement they drove the robots around the course.
VRC 4303C team members Daniel, Matthew, Katherine and Christopher mentor 42 students on seven VEX Robotics teams at Benton Middle School twice a week. Matthew and Daniel have been mentoring for three years, Katherine and Christopher for two. Last year, as a team we volunteered over 600 hours working with the teams at Benton. We help the teams with their robot design, building techniques, programming, engineering notebooks, stress and time management and have become experts in removing stripped screws. Daniel and Christopher focus on design and mechanical and help teach the teams how to troubleshoot and solve their own problems. Matthew teaches the programmers how to program in RobotC and helps them think through the logic of programming. Katherine passes along her expertise and teaches them all about engineering notebooks through classes and individual team critiques.
Prince William County Schools Superintendent’s Breakfast
4303C was invited to attend the PWCS Superintendent’s Annual Business Breakfast. We represented the Forest Park Robotics program and the entire VEX Robotics program for PWCS. We had the opportunity to talk to the Superintendent of Prince William Public Schools, Dr. Steven Walts, the Chairman of the school board, Mr. Milton Johns and our Virginia State Congressmen and Representatives. The business community was well represented at the event and we were able to introduce them to the robotics program, talk about what we do and the importance it plays in our lives.
Members of VRC 4303 have volunteered at many elementary events for First Lego League over the years. We volunteer in many capacities: Judges, Referees and Operations Support at the event. We provide event support in addition to helping setup on Friday and tearing down the event when it was over. We help present awards, lead the dance parties and even the famous “STEM” cheer! We realize we are role models for the next generation of roboteers and we do everything we can to encourage younger students as they begin their robotics careers!
This past Spring, Forest Park Robotics was proud to host the 10th Anniversary of Roboticon! Roboticon is the Prince William County Schools middle school championship. The top teams from each middle school are invited to compete one last time. It’s the last event of the year and it’s all about fun and bragging rights! The competition was fierce as many teams had just returned for the US Open and VEX Worlds. There were t-shirt cannons, Minions in the audience and team mascots! It was a fantastic way to end the year!