We take the Smilebots to the World Finals in Houston
LUGANO – Also this year the teams Smilebots Junior and Smilebots of the Roboticminds section of ated-ICT Ticino are among the protagonists of the international challenge of robotics FIRST LEGO League. Last month the Smilebots Junior dominated the regional challenge by qualifying for the national selections to be held in the Canton of Aargau on April 2, while the Smilebots were selected for the World Finals in Houston, Texas, which will take place from April 20 to 23.
The ated-ICT Ticino teams are ready for the Swiss Trials and the FIRST LEGO League World Final in Houston
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The boys of the two teams are between 9 and 16 years old and are trained by 100% Mentor ated4kids Corrado Corsale and Federico Yankelevich, coach and professionals in the sector, and coaches Armando Cosentino and Ruggero Domeniconi, who in these years have invested countless hours of their free time to train and train the two teams. The results have arrived: the Smilebots have in fact taken home 6 regional titles in Ticino, 2 Swiss national titles, 2 participations in the European finals and a participation in the 2019 world final in Detroit.
The Smilebots Junior are the youngest team in the tournament, and are training for the Swiss final next month. One of the team’s members, Leonardo Yankelevich, tells us what this year’s challenge is all about, which, as with every edition, is set by LEGO: We need to build a LEGO robot, program it and make sure it can do as many missions as possible in 2.5 minutes. The mission this year is called Cargo Connect because everything is connected to the means». This year’s missions are, therefore, related to logistics problems, and as Leonardo tells us: «I learned how different mechanisms work and this year I also learned things about transportation, such as that there are too many container ships and too few ports». In addition to the challenges of building a robot composed of LEGO components and the Cargo Connect challenge, for the regional final the young team will also have to prepare a presentation in English, expertise that will be added to the others acquired during the FIRST LEGO League. Due to the relocation of regional races due to pandemic issues, the Smilebots Junior International Tournament will stop this year at the European Finals, which will be held in Germany next May.
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The words of Federico Corsale
Of the Smilebots team we talked with Federico Corsale: What I really like about the challenge is that you can travel and move and see new places, because winning we go to the various championships. I really like LEGO, I’m the team that builds them, and I also really like working in a team». To the question of what excited him most about the World Final in Detroit in 2019, he answers What I really liked was traveling with the team and visiting this beautiful place with so many people and so many teams, and that’s when we realized that we are really good. And it was also very nice that there were teams from all over the world and many cultures». As for the skills acquired in these years of international challenges, Federico claims to have learned to achieve a goal, to work in a team, to solve problems and also to present a project before a jury. All soft skills fundamental for the future of these young people, that ated-ICT Ticino promotes with enthusiasm and dedication from the birth of the initiative ated4kids in 2014.