What Does a Year of Robotics Entail?

Updated: May 28, 2018

The Roaring Robotics Drive Team at the 2018 Midwest Regional Competition in Chicago

Roaring Robotics is active year-round.

Roaring Robotics showing off the team and robots at the 2016 Batavia High School Corn Boil

At the beginning of the school year (mid-August), the team often does some recruiting and outreach activities transitioning into training activities prior to the first build season.

Mini-robots at the 2017 Flapjack Challenge hosted by Winnovation, Team 1627, in Winnebago, Ill.

The first build season starts towards the end of October and last six weeks in preparation for the Flapjack Challenge, a downsized warm-up competition hosted by Winnovation, Team 1625, out of Winnebago. The Flapjack Challenge typically occurs on the first Saturday of December. After the competion, the team takes a break for the holidays until...

Roaring Robotics students brainstorming to meet the challenge revealed as part of the 2018 FIRST Robotics Competition Kick-Off. The Kick-Off event was hosted by Caterpillar and Gear-It-Forward, Team 2338.

The main build season typically starts on the first Saturday in January with the official FIRST Robotics Challenge Kick-Off for the season. At this point, students have about 6-1/2 weeks to design, build, program, and (hopefully) test a robot for the official season competitions.

Building a robot starts with the design process, usually with some computer aided design.

Parts for the robot are precision machined.

The Roaring Robotics Drive Team transfers the robot from the pit area to the field for a competition match.

Roaring Robotics typically participates in two competitions; one in Peoria, Ill. in mid-March; and the other in Chicago, Ill. usually during Batavia School District’s spring break at the end of March or early April. However, as we’re not assured of being able to attend specific competitions, the competitions we attend may end up at different times and locations. After the competition season ends, the team typically takes a breather with perhaps some outreach activities but few, if any, meetings.

Robots on the field for the 2017 Rock River Off-Season Competition in Rockford, Ill.

After school has let out, the team typically focuses on gearing up for an off-season competition (Rock River Off-Season Competition - R2OC) held in Rockford, Illinois at the end of June. During this time, the team will typically do some training activities in addition to build activities. The team may also do some recruiting and outreach activities. After the R2OC, the team usually takes another breather with some recruiting activities to gear up for the next season.

Roaring Robotics gets a good start to the season with a healthy round of laser tag.

Of course, the team may factor in some activities to enhance student social skills. Laser tag comes to mind.

© 2016 - 2020 Go Team 2704, NFP