NEAAAT school news, Feb. 12

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The NEAAAT robotics team won the Research Award trophy at the FLL State Competition held at N.C. A&T State university on Feb. 2. Team members include Ahmya Rivera, Lillian Whitesides, Hailee Williamson, Mikiah Powell, Gabrielle Hoskins, Harris Mordecai, Barek Musgrave, Joseph Hedley (teacher), Tonya Little (executive director of STEM/coach), Andrew Burnham, Jacob Comoroski, Ryan Searles, Shala Spence (team volunteer). Not in photo is Melissa Rady (teacher).

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From staff reports

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

FLL robotics team wins state research award

The Griffins, the robotics and technology team at NEAAAT, won the Research Award trophy at the FLL State Competition held at N.C. A&T State university on Feb. 2.

The Griffins include 7th and 8th grade students at NEAAAT. 

Along with programming robots, teams are also evaluated on an elaborate research project, as well as how they demonstrate FLL Core Values, including discovery, innovation, impact, inclusion, teamwork, fun, and gracious professionalism. The team has been researching, meeting with professionals and practicing their presentations for months.

The Griffins qualified for the state tournament during the FLL Regional Qualifying Tournament held January 12 at Broad Creek Middle School in Newport. In addition, the team won the Champions Award for their overall top performance at the regional tournament.

This year's theme for the research project was "Into Orbit." The project assignment for the "Into Orbit" season was to identify a physical or social problem faced by humans during long-duration space exploration within our Sun’s solar system and propose a solution.

The Griffins examined the problem of providing fresh food utilizing hydroponics and bioengineered plants. They learned about hydroponics by growing tomatoes, eggplant, kale, basil, spinach and kohlrabi on two hydroponics towers at their school. The students learned how to establish plants from seed, maintain environmental conditions for growth by monitoring temperature and pH, and sustaining the plants by the regular application of nutrients.  

The NEAAAT team won the state Research Award, which FLL states "recognizes a team that utilizes diverse resources to formulate an in-depth and comprehensive understanding of the problem they have identified."

"I am very excited to have had a NEAAAT team qualify for the state tournament and bring home state awards for the past two years," said NEAAAT Executive Director of STEM Tonya Little. "We're proud of the students and their volunteer coaches. We are appreciative of the parents, community stakeholders, and sponsors. Competing on a robotics team takes a lot of dedication and hard work, resilience, and perseverance, along with the technical and teamwork that the students developed throughout the season."

Stabley wins Bright Ideas Grant

NEAAAT aviation science instructional coach Jason Stabley was awarded the 2018-2019 Electric Cooperatives of Eastern Carolina, Albemarle Electric Membership Corporation, Bright Ideas Grant.

Stabley won a $954.98 grant for “Bird’s Eye View” — a grant to procure science equipment for NEAAAT’s aviation science course.

Stabley purchased Tello Quadcopters for use in the classroom project, "Bird's Eye View."

“The goal of this project is to give the students an understanding of unmanned aircraft systems and the role that Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics careers play in our community,” Stabley said.  

“Educators who win Bright Ideas grants are going above and beyond for their students, they are providing unique experiences focused on real-world learning,” said Tonya Little, NEAAAT’s Executive Director of STEM. “Coach Stabley's project gives students skill sets that will be used in existing jobs.”