Carroll Middle School and Maple Creek Middle School participated in the First Lego League robotics competition on Nov. 20 at Purdue University-Fort Wayne.

The teams created a Legos robot and competed against other schools on three of four courses, created in Legos, in which their robots were designed to complete missions.

According to the First Lego League website, the organization’s mission is to inspire young people to be science and technology leaders and innovators by engaging them in exciting mentor-based programs that build science, engineering and technology skills, that inspire innovation and that foster well-rounded life capabilities including self-confidence, communication and leadership.

Carroll Middle School 7th grader Caleb DeGood, who participated on the Legocy Blue team, said the group built and programmed a robot to complete certain missions and are given points based on the completion of the mission.

Chloe Franklin, an 8th grader at Carroll Middle School and a member of the Legocy Blue team, said the groups began creating and programming their robots at the beginning of September.

This is Franklin’s first year on the robotics team. Carroll Middle School 7th grader and member of Legocy Blue Makayla Bolz said this year she is on the innovation side of the program but was assisting in parts of the robot. DeGood has been in robotics for four years.

“I wanted to join this team because, one, I really like building the robots, and two, it’s really fun to figure out how to solve problems,” Franklin said. “I think it’s really cool that kids our age are able to at least try to make an impact to solve problems.”

Bolz said she enjoys working with other people and learning new things.

“I just think it’s really fun and I really enjoy coding and building robots,” DeGood said.

Bolz and DeGood said they are looking at going into engineering careers when they are older.

Members of the Legocy Gold team, the second Carroll Middle School group, Ahna Aldred, Hnin Hoaind and Dominic Black said they are hoping they will be able to advance to the state level. The students said they are also interested in engineering careers.

Maple Creek Middle School 6th grader Achyut Ethiraj said he thought their team competed well and completed some missions unexpectedly.

“When we were in the [practice] room, we did very well, but when we were out there, we could improve a little more,” he said.

Aditi Ethiraj, 6th grader at Maple Creek Middle School, and Antonio Rodriguez-Medina, 7th grader at Maple Creek Middle School, said they both learned how to be collaborative while on the robotics team.

Due to printing deadlines, Northwest News was not able to access the scores of the teams before printing, which released Monday night. To see the scores, visit

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