Wickham Primary claim gold, silver at WA RoboCup event

Shannon BeattiePilbara News
Wickham Primary School placed first and second at the RoboCup Junior WA State competition in Perth.
Camera IconWickham Primary School placed first and second at the RoboCup Junior WA State competition in Perth. Credit: Wickham Primary School

Brainiacs from Wickham Primary School proved themselves against their opposition when they placed first and second at the annual RoboCup Junior WA State competition in Perth on August 9 and 10.

It’s the fourth time the school has sent teams to the competition, and while previous students have been runners-up, this year was the first time they had earned the top spot.

The school’s STEM program coordinator Brett Marshall said the event was known as the Robotics Olympics and really put the students under pressure.

“It forces them to think on their feet and it’s a lot stricter than the Pilbara RoboCup,” he said.

“Teachers aren’t allowed to help, so they have to come up with all of the solutions on their own, which really puts them out of their comfort zone.”

Harrison Page, Tessa Groth, Sophie Lyall and Harmony Brown came first in the on-stage performance category, which had them develop a code for a robot to dance.

Mr Marshall said since the Pilbara RoboCup in June, they had worked hard to add more to the dance and make the coding more complex and reliable.

“A lot of it came down to their knowledge and their ability to talk about it,” he said.

“They have to be able to explain what they’ve done and why, and they did exceptionally well with that part.”

Kade Higgin and Toby Nunn placed second in the rescue division, meaning the school has achieved the same feat four years in a row.

“Kade was the leader of the team and he did a lot of problem-solving on the day, plus there were a few extra challenges which he had to overcome,” Mr Marshall said. More than 600 students from 60 schools competed in 138 teams during the competition, and 19 of those teams were from regional schools.

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