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    Two LWSD-based teams compete at state, both make a splash


    Lego competition

    There are only winners when teams show up to the FIRST ®LEGO® League (FLL) Challenge state championship each year, and 2021 was no different. One team with students from Lake Washington School District (LWSD) that competed this year is headed to the global semi-finals. A second team isn’t moving on to the finals but they created a real-world application that addresses fitness and well-being during remote living. 

    FLL teams build LEGO-based robots to complete set missions, but they must also take part in an innovation project which involves research and outreach in the community. The challenge this year was to identify creative and innovative solutions to motivate and keep our community more active.

    The Unique Orchils, made up of six LWSD students, is an all-girls team whose innovation project was nominated as one of the four best to move onto the global semi-finals. The team competed against more than 100 other teams at the state championship. Unique Orchils built a mobile app called Gen2 (available now in Android App store), which acts as an encyclopedia of games that is passed through generations. The Gen2 app recommends fun and active games from around the globe for users based on their search criteria. It offers a fun way for getting some good exercise and to be active. Twenty finalist teams will advance from the semi-finals to showcase their research and inventions, and present to industry leaders at the FIRST Global Innovation Awards on June 28-30, 2021.

    The Iron Robots, another team based out of LWSD, is a four-member team that also made it to state because of their innovation project. The team began researching how people maintain physical wellness through their busy lives. Research led the Iron Robots to develop the Stay Fit Live Healthy  project as a possible solution. As the team states on the “Team Iron Robots” YouTube channel, “Our goal for our solution is, motivate users, keep it simple, easy and accessible from anywhere and at no cost to users.” After gathering data from surveys and interviews, the team discovered that most people “prefer to have company during a workout and small, simple exercises.” They learned from health experts that “gradual progression is good for people with medical conditions” as well as for those who are healthy. Although they won’t be moving on to the semi-finals, they did some great work that could make a difference in people’s lives someday.

    Here are the team members who competed in the FIRST ®LEGO® League (FLL) Challenge Washington state championship from our district:

    Unique Orchils

    • Akanksha Revuru, 6th grade, Evergreen Middle School
    • Akshara Pathangi, 5th grade, Mead Elementary
    • Anshu Kopparapu, 6th grade, Inglewood Middle School
    • Dheesha Sriram, 6th grade, Evergreen Middle School
    • Vanshika Sathish, 6th grade, Inglewood Middle School
    • Vedhika Sathish, 6th grade, Inglewood Middle School

    Iron Robots

    • Suhasini Prakash, 5th grade, Rosa Parks Elementary School
    • Sarayu Sekaran, 5th grade, McAuliffe Elementary School
    • Manu Hariganesh, 5th grade, Rosa Parks Elementary School
    • Diya Kowshik, 5th grade, Rosa Parks Elementary School