25th annual Manitoba robot games returns in Winnipeg

The 25th annual Manitoba robot games returned to Winnipeg on Saturday after a three-year absence due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We had to cancel 20 games about a week in advance. So much disappointment on half the students,” said Alan Pollard, Manitoba Robot Games Executive.

“There’s a huge amount of disappointment, but we’re glad to be back. There are lots of students here. Most of the students are back.”

The games began at 9:30 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. in the Gymnasium at Tech Voc High School.

It’s a competition for students from kindergarten to grade twelve. For months, teams of students have worked to design and build robots for their competition of choice.

The event has 16 different competitions where robots with names like The Yeti, CUL8R, and British Toast Mach-K go head-to-head in things like sumo wrestling, super scramble, robo-critter, and competition for lego.

Organizers say the competition is a great way for students to get a sense of real-world design and engineering and they come away with benefits such as practical skills, problem-solving, teamwork, and knowledge of electronics and programming. The event also helps students build interest in science, technology, engineering and mathematics, otherwise known as STEM subjects.

“We get starting in elementary school is the place where you really start to build the enthusiasm and the interest in STEM subjects.” said Pollard.

“And then if we can get it to carry on through high school, we get them into university and then engineering.”

“We need more scientists and engineers and architects and mathematicians in the biz.”

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