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Whitehurst Robotics Team Nominated for Innovation Award
robotics team

The Grade 5 robotics team from the Bolles Lower School Whitehurst Campus was nominated as one of the nominees from the Northeast Florida region to compete for the FIRST Lego League Global Innovation Award. The contest could yield a $20,000 prize for the winning team.

The FLL Global Innovation Award showcase real-world, innovative solutions created by FLL teams from around the world as part of their annually themed challenge. 20 semifinalists teams will be recognized for their inventions and receive assistance to further develop solutions, including the $20,000 top prize.

To enter, teams were asked to identify a relevant problem and propose a solution. The Bolles robotics team outlined an issue many families face: young people are less active because of their addiction to technology and gaming. The Bolles team proposed a fitness tracker that combines parental controls and activity rewards. Their idea gives parent the ability to lock access to technology or WiFi until a certain level of physical activity is achieved. Under their plan, young people could set goals and receive in-game prizes from EA Sports and Epic Games when fitness goals are reached.

“The eventual goal would be to partner with a gaming company like EA Sports or Epic Games to produce licensed watches and fitness trackers,” said teacher and coach Beth Zerkowski.

According to FLL organizers, the competition’s goal is to inspire the next generation of innovators. Many teams go on to meet leaders, receive patents, bring their inventions to market and become entrepreneurs.