IT was a day of excitement and innovation as OPA’s team of eager participants took part in the ‘Trash Trek Challenge’ at Ford Dunton Technical Centre in Essex, scooping third place and collecting medals for Best Teamwork. The project encourages young people to explore the management of modern-day waste, yet in a timeless and captivating manner – through the use of popular-as-ever, Lego!
The challenge is designed to exercise skills in teamwork and initiative as well as testing the youngsters on their problem-solving ability and originality in approach. Students have worked closely with their coach, constructing and adapting small, perfectly controlled Lego robots, programmed to perform a myriad of impressive motor-skills. These electronic entities whizzed and whirred across the purpose-built game-board, shuttling and sorting piles of red, green and black plastics, in a bid to score points for responsible trash management!
Self-named ‘OPA Warriors’ were noted to be very creative and quick-thinking during the Robot Game – the big performance in which teams were able to show off their carefully cultivated robot routine.
Feedback from the judges revealed Ormiston Park Academy’s participants were impressive performers, clearly adapting and tweaking their robot’s activity in response to the demands of the game. Their teamwork didn’t go unnoticed either.
Ellie Bridge, year 8, Ormiston Park Academy, participant in the Trask Trek Challenge mused: “It was a spot-light moment when they said ‘Ormiston Park Academy’ [had won Best Teamwork Award]. Everyone was clapping for us, which made us feel very pleased with our work!”
Laurence Boulter, teacher and coach for the participants added: “Our students did exceptionally well, particularly as such young contenders. It is a global competition for 9-16 year olds, so our young crew did themselves extremely proud.”
Another victorious moment for Ormiston Park Academy!