Published: 11/24/2022 9:00:23 AM
We’re hoping for good weather for the citywide Fire and Ice event organized by the Greenfield Fire Department on Saturday, December 3rd.
Be sure to visit the meeting house for the second Tree Festival of the Friends of the Meeting House from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. Sharon Andrews bakes her famous cookies and Larry Gilbert plays Christmas music.
Also, the next Greenfield Craft Fair will be held on Thursday, December 8th from 5pm to 7pm at the Meeting House. This is a truly wonderful mix of local artists and artisans. Stop by the Meeting House next Thursday and tick some Christmas shopping off your list!
On November 19th, Greenfield’s Stephenson Library’s FIRST LEGO League Challenge team of seven boys, ages 8 to 11, competed in the State Qualifier of New Hampshire’s FIRST Competition at Merrimack High School. Although the team did not advance to the states round, the Brighid Wood-coached group was commended for their teamwork and cooperation. While the Stephenson Memorial Library group happens to consist of boys, girls are always encouraged to join!
A few days before the competition, two other volunteers and I were able to watch the team – which consists mainly of 8-year-olds – practicing their presentation for the jury. They did a very good job talking about their project, even if they were squirming like jumping beans with excitement.
When I was with the team they were having a bit of a crisis due to a crashed iPad and were overjoyed to find that there was still code stored in their robots. It’s great to see that there are so many enthusiastic young engineers and programmers at Greenfield!
The first requirement of the FIRST LEGO League Challenge team competition was to create an innovation project aimed at solving a problem in the team community. The Stephenson team came up with the idea of installing solar panels and windmills in the center of Greenfield to mitigate the city’s frequent power outages. When asked where a good spot for a windmill would be, one team member exclaimed, “On Mr. Jarvis’ field!” Another team member – although he generally supports the idea of solar panels and windmills – confided that he actually prefers when the power goes out because “then we’ll have a fire and marshmallows.”
In the second part of the competition in Merrimack, cheered on by many of their parents, the boys demonstrated the robots they had constructed and programmed to perform a specific set of tasks. Every FIRST LEGO League team worldwide will receive the same LEGO robot kits and competition mats for the competition.
At the competition, the team was happy that all the robots worked as expected and were able to complete their tasks. Wood commented that the kids really enjoyed seeing how other teams had solved the same problems in different ways and came back to their own table full of new ideas.
Wood and her husband Andre have coached many different robotics teams over the years, from kindergarten to the high school team at ConVal and now through a 4-H club. Wood, who has led FIRST Explore groups for younger children at the library for several years, founded this new middle school team in August 2021 to improve the skills of the youngsters – particularly for some of the older children who were up for more of a challenge.
Now that the serious competition for the year is complete, the team will focus on another project for a spring just-for-fun competition. Wood is always looking for a few more youngsters to be on the team for next year’s competition as there are always kids who are getting older and moving to the next level. For more information on the Stephenson Library FIRST LEGO team, please contact Wood at [email protected] For FIRST Lego League information, visit firstlegoleague.org or nhlegoleague.com.
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