Worlds Day 1: Sock Monkeys

Hey guys! So today has been crazy and it is currently only 11:11 (make a wish!) I’m sitting upstairs in Union Station, away from the pit area so that I can blog. We can’t have wifi or hot spots in the pit area OR the arena because it will interfere with the robots and the game. We haven’t started playing matches yet, but we did have judging this morning! So, in the FTC judging happens at different times at every competition. This year is happened at 9:30 AM….bright and early. In judging we have the whole team, our engineering notebook, our robot, and anything extra that we think we might need to show to judges. The judging room is usually 2-4 people, our coach and obviously…us! Every team has a different idea or strategy that they use to talk to judges. Public speaking can sometimes be really nerve wrecking so we practice before we go in and make sure the team knows what they are saying. It is cool to see how the team becomes more confident and bold with speaking as the season goes on. For the World Championship we chose to set up our blogging like this:

1. Everyone will walk in and shake the judges hand while lining up saying “hello” or “how are you?”

2. We will the the judges stickers, buttons and key chains.

3. Logan Gross (one of the main speakers/a senior on the team) will be a key speaker along with me (Molly…who is also a senior) He will help transition from one topic to the next and I will help with forgotten or missing information.

4. As we step forward to speak, we will introduce ourselves.

5. After we all talk about what we have done/presented everything to the judges, we will ask if they have any questions (assuming there is time left..)

We only have 20 minutes to tell them about 9 months of progress, so sometimes it can get kind of tricky and we have to choose the more important topic. And today…for the FIRST time this season, we were able to finish judging AND answer questions from the judges which is a huge accomplishment considering we have a team of 17. Now that judging is over, the robot has to go to judging. She has to pass hardware/software inspections and she has to be able to fit in a 18×18 inch box. Only 4 or 5 of the team members go to robot inspections though. It is usually our main programmer, and our drive team. While they are doing that the rest of the Sock Monkeys have time to take pictures, scout, have some free time, or sit in the pit area. I usually sit in the pit area, but right now I am blogging. 😛 The people who sit in the pit area always smile, and say “Hi” to as many people as possible. A lot of other teams will come and scout us out, asking about our robots abilities, strengths, and weakness’s. We will have a lunch break from 12:30-1:30 and then we will continue on our day. Today isn’t very exciting because we haven’t started matches yet. We have gotten to meet the South Korean’s, the Australians, the Middle Easterners, and the Canadians though! Everyone else has been from the United States so far.

I’ll post tonight again with all of the pictures, etc!

5 Responses to “Worlds Day 1: Sock Monkeys”

  1. The experience you get making those presentations is hugely valuable. It will give you an edge over others in college who haven’t had the experience. Public speaking is scary for most people. Being willing and able to do it is wonderful.

  2. Great stuff! Even experienced speakers can find presenting info nerve-racking, but having a plan in advance as you seem to is a big help.

    This will help you so much in terms of things to talk about at interview and give you a huge edge out in the world!

    I wish my learners had such a real life opportunity! Must get on that!

  3. You can give your learners that real life opportunity regardless if you are in robotics or not. While it would be awesome if you started a team…I understand if it doesn’t happen. My school does Project based learning: and though it can be an occasional pain: it makes you work in a group of people, and speak about it publicly. Incorporate student/student learning too. Letting them teach the class on a subject can be much more fun! Letting a child speak during study halls, or to younger kids can help build that courage up. Before they- or you- know it, there won’t even be an “uhm” in his/her presentation.
    Robotics though…does help a lot with public speaking. We have a section in our Engineering Notebook dedicated to Community/Outreach. Everyone has to speak at those events!

  4. Catching up on Feesly. Enjoy your blog as a parent in California of a child who desperately needs recess and interactive learning. His favorite class this year is science because they are dissecting stuff.

    Sounds like the robots event was fun – speaking is nerve wracking but might not wreck if sufficiently prepared, as they likely were.

Leave a Reply