Interested in encouraging your K-8 child further into STEM through building LEGO® robots? The LigerBots will host its annual FIRST® LEGO® League (FLL) information night on Wednesday, June 14, from 7:00-8:30 p.m., at the Newton North High School Film Lecture Hall. You can register and find more information at ligerbots.org/fll.
May 28, 2023
The LigerBots have attended or hosted over 40 outreach events in the past year, and we aren’t planning on stopping any time soon!
On Sunday, May 6, we did outreach with our robot and STEAM activities at the Healthy Kids Event at the Newton YMCA, which aims to inspire children and families to maintain healthy habits by keeping their minds and body active. Our booth featured numerous STEAM activities, such as slime, human robot maze, and solar ovens. Kids learned about states of matter by melting crayons and making slime, keeping their minds active. Our 2022 robot is capable of shooting oversized tennis balls for children to catch, which promotes active movement.
The LigerBots helped BikeNewton at their third annual Bike Rodeo on Sunday, May 7, at Newton South High School. We helped the bikers-in-learning practice their bike safety protocols on our makeshift obstacle course.
On Thursday, May 17, we held our annual awards night at Newton South. We celebrated and honored mentors, coaches, parents, and students. After a large potluck, coaches gave awards to students, and mentors, coaches, and graduating seniors received gifts. Also, continuing a long-standing tradition, students lightheartedly roasted seniors. Shortly after the ceremony, we also announced our team’s new executives.
On Sunday, May 21, the LigerBots marched in the Wellesley Veterans Parade alongside Wellesley’s FRC 8567 team, Ultraviolet. The parade was part of Wellesley’s Wonderful Weekend, whose theme was the 250th anniversary of the Boston Tea Party. We had a blast marching alongside Ultraviolet!
On the same day, we visited the Daisy Scout Troop. We displayed our tabletop robot, a mini robot capable of recognizing and navigating, and the scouts drew navigable paths with black marker for the robot to go along. We also offered several STEAM activities—as usual!—such as our binary bead bracelet activity.
We also recently hosted a birthday party for an elementary school student. The student attended our first birthday party, last year, and invited us to this one. At the event, LigerBots students demonstrated the tabletop robot. We also offered STEAM activities like creating skeleton handprints, where students make fake x-rays of their hands by tracing their hands in crayons and drawing out bones with olive oil. We also guided guests through creating buttons.
We’re in the midst of an outreach blitz! On May 28, we will march in the Newton Memorial Day parade. And, on Saturday, June 3, we will participate in the Walk for Independence at UMass Amherst’s Mount Ida Campus. The walk will support the Carroll Center for the Blind’s mission to aid the visually impaired. During the same weekend, the LigerBots will also compete in BattleCry, an off-season FIRST Robotics competition held at the Worcester Polytechnic Institute. More details about BattleCry can be read here. And, on Sunday, June 4, we will visit a Girl Scout troop at the Second Church in West Newton. Whew!
Coming up soon is our annual FIRST LEGO League (FLL) Info Night on Wednesday, June 14, from 7 to 8 p.m. at Newton North High School. Join us for an amazing hands-on opportunity for young students to engage in STEAM! FLL is a program for students in grades K–8 to build and compete with LEGO robots. If you and your child are interested in joining, join us at FLL Info Night to learn more.
Following our successful end to the season—we won the Imagery Award at the New England District Championship, our CTO was named a Dean’s List Finalist, and our robot finished in the top 10% worldwide—we are now looking to have a strong start to the postseason! Specifically, we are now focusing on community events and off-season projects.
The LigerBots visited the Carroll Center for the Blind, a rehabilitation center in Newton that provides innovative services for those with vision impairment, on April 18. There, we talked about our team, and showcased Prometheus, our 2022 robot, for residents. In return, we learned about the fascinating innovations residents use, such as a live demonstration showing how they navigate phones and laptops through specific hand movements. Residents also gave us a tour of their workshop, where they work with wood and clay. This visit continues a wonderful relationship between the LigerBots and the Carroll center, and we hope to continue working with them in the future.
On Saturday, April 22, several LigerBots students visited the Museum of Printing in Haverhill, which exhibits a rich collection of printing, typesetting, and graphic arts technology. Students learned about the transition from hand-setting individual sorts of foundry type to mechanized hot-metal typesetting and the incredibly complex mechanisms behind the Linotype, Monotype, and Ludlow line casting machines. Students also met museum president Frank Romano, an industry expert and professor emeritus at RIT who has written over 80 books related to the graphic arts. We’re incredibly grateful for the experience and insights we gained from our visit!
The LigerBots also attended Newton’s Earth Day celebration on April 23. Newton’s annual Earth Day Festival features local organizations that promote sustainability. Despite the rainy weather, we proudly displayed Prometheus on the front steps of Newton City Hall, where students explained the robot and our team to passersby. Inside, students led a STEAM activity booth, where they guided children to create DIY solar ovens and learn about the scientific applications of solar energy.
During a team meeting on April 26, coaches Igor and Diane ran a fun team-building activity—dancing! The activity came about from an agreement during the District Championships, where Coach Igor agreed to wear our Liger mascot costume in exchange for students agreeing to take a swing dance lesson from him. Students had a lot of fun during this unique team-bonding event, and we hope Igor and Diane can continue to give more lessons in the future!
To continue our efforts in community outreach, the LigerBots also attended the Lincoln Eliot Elementary School Science Fair on April 27. LigerBots members ran multiple booths featuring engaging STEAM activities involving solar ovens and using origami to build DNA helices and double pyramids. We also unveiled our new LEGO robot for outreach events, built by students Isaac S. and Dennis L., which is capable of self-navigating a simple course.
We will be participating in many outreach events in the near future. Please join us this Saturday, May 6, at the Healthy Kids Event at the Newton YMCA, which aims to inspire children and families to maintain their physical and mental health. On Sunday, May 7, we will also be volunteering at the third annual Bike Rodeo at Newton South High School, where children can navigate biking obstacle courses and improve their biking skills.
Our student engineers are also beginning preparations for BattleCry, an annual off-season competition held at Worcester Polytechnic Institute. The event, featuring 64 teams, will be held the weekend of June 3. We hope that you can all join us then!
With the competition season being completed, we will begin our selection process for the new executive board. Over the next few weeks, promising students will make a pitch to be chosen by coaches for various leadership positions on the LigerBots, such as CTO, CMO, COO, and more. The new executives will be announced on Awards Night on May 17. We can’t wait to see how our new leaders will shape the team!
LigerBots DCMP Highlights: Imagery Award, CTO named Dean’s List Finalist, and a top 10% finish worldwide!
April 14, 2023
The LigerBots finished strong at the New England District Championship! Following our excellent performances at the Rhode Island and Revere District competitions, the LigerBots competed alongside alliance partners Air Strike 78 and Mayhem Robotics 8724 and placed 25th out of 90 teams—nearly qualifying us for the World Championships.
Besides our strong finish, the team also won our first Imagery Award at the New England championship level, which recognizes “outstanding visual aesthetic integration of machine and team appearance.” The team attributes the award to the graphics subgroup, who designed a cohesive team image, including a banner, 60-page team booklet, graphics standards booklet, and more. Graphics also coordinated with engineers to bring the same aesthetic standard to the robot by including tiger stripes in the design.
Kevin, LigerBots co-CTO and junior at Newton South High School, was named one of the four Dean’s List Finalists and won an invitation to attend the World Championship in Houston. He was selected for his excellent leadership, expertise, and passion for robotics. Congrats to Kevin!
LigerBots engineer Jeffrey kicked off the event by playing the national anthem on his electric guitar, Jimi Hendrix style. To maintain high spirits during the event, we recited our unique LigerBots fan chant. Coach Igor Tepermeister also dressed up in our mascot costume and danced.
After a challenging yet rewarding competition season, the LigerBots will wind down into the off-season by conducting community outreach events and working on off-season projects. On Sunday, April 23 we will be attending Newton’s Earth Day Festival at the Newton City Hall from 12 to 4 p.m. There, we will display our robot and present fun STEAM activities for children. Check us out!
LigerBots are Finalists at the Greater Boston District Event!
March 31, 2023
The LigerBots are off to the New England District Championship! Our playoff alliance finished second at the Greater Boston District Event in Revere last weekend, earning us a Finalist award. We competed against 38 other teams from across the district. We were captains of the seventh alliance and chose Lobstah Bots 246 and the Crusaders 238 as our partners. Thanks to them for helping us all succeed during the playoffs!
We competed in 12 thrilling matches during the qualification rounds. One highlight was when all three robots in our alliance simultaneously balanced on the Charge Station (a field element similar to a wide and low see-saw) which earned us a lot of extra points.
Overall, we played phenomenally! Our drive team kept cool under high pressure, and coordinated well with our alliance partners. The pit crew, who were responsible for maintaining the robot between matches, were quick and efficient in keeping Atlas, our robot, up to speed while also talking about our team’s accomplishments with FIRST judges. And, despite being formed at the last minute, the scouting group performed well in analyzing match data of every robot to assist with our strategy and our playoff alliance picks.
To keep up team spirit throughout the event, LigerBots students painted each other’s faces with glitter and recited fun cheers. Two LigerBots, Juliana and Jeffrey, also performed the national anthem for the crowd on Saturday and Sunday, respectively. Juliana sang, and Jeffrey played the guitar.
Our excellent performance during both the Greater Boston and Rhode Island events has earned us a place at the FRC District Championship in Springfield from April 6 to 8. Watch for an announcement with more information soon. The link to more information about the event is on FIRST’s website here.