How do you get a remotely-controlled robot to kick a soccer ball into a goal? To find the answer, you’d need to consult Team SPORK of Pine Lake Prep, which will be taking its soccer robot to a championship competition in robotics this weekend.
School Notes has news of Team SPORK, plus an 8th grader from Bailey Middle who qualified for last Friday’s state Geography Bee, and a packed spring calendar of school events. This Saturday alone will feature the spring plant sale by North Mecklenburg High students, Davidson IB’s annual Community Walk for Darfur, and Woodlawn’s Living History Day.
PLP ROBOTICS TEAM IS ‘ROOKIE ALL-STAR’
Pine Lake Preparatory’s Upper School robotics team, Team SPORK, won top honors at a regional FIRST Robotics Competition tournament earlier this month in Raleigh, which means the team is headed to the World Championships this weekend in Atlanta.
FIRST (or For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) is designed to involve students in science and technology. This year’s competition required spending six weeks getting a robot to control and kick soccer balls into goals. The robot was also required to end the game by suspending itself from a seven-foot tower.
The Pine Lake Prep team won the Rookie All-Star and the Best Website awards at the April 2-3 regional competition, which featured 44 teams and their soccer-kicking robots. (You can check out that award-winning website by clicking on www.teamspork.com.)
The Rookie All-Star award is the highest honor available for a rookie team and earns SPORK a trip to the Atlanta Georgia Dome this weekend for the Worlds competition.
SPORK is sponsored by Ingersoll Rand of Davidson, mentored by JD Mills of Utilipath, and coached by Audrey Cundari, who teaches calculus, physics, and robotics at the Mooresville-based charter school. The team’s motto is: Victory is a dish best served with a spork.
BAILEY 8TH GRADER COMPETES AT STATE GEO BEE
Among the 103 students from across the state who qualified for the North Carolina Geographic Bee was one student from the Lake Norman area. Schuyler Beltrami, an 8th grader at Bailey Middle in Cornelius, won his school bee in January and then placed high enough on the state qualifying exam to be invited to the North Carolina bee, held Friday at the Broyhill Civic Center in Lenoir.
The bee featured a preliminary round of eight questions. Schuyler missed his very first question, which he called the most nerve-racking moment of the event, but then he calmed down and gave the correct answer to the next seven. The four participants who answered all eight prelim questions correctly automatically advanced to the finals. Schuyler and the 14 others who answered seven out of eight advanced to a tie-breaker round of five more questions. Schuyler whizzed through his first four in the tie-breaker round, but then missed on his fifth and final question, about the jurisdiction of the Sakhalin Islands (they are currently part of Russia, but have been claimed in the past by Japan).
“I am so proud of Schuyler’s accomplishments at the competition representing our club but most importantly representing our great school!” said Bailey teacher Adam Volk, who heads the Bailey Geo Bee Club, which met Friday mornings from September through March.
Schuyler, the son of John and Dawn Beltrami, prepared for the state bee by consulting with Aidan Berkey of Davidson, who placed 2nd at the state bee in 2008.
The winner of the 2010 state bee was Logan Shaut, an 8th grader at Blowing Rock Elementary who will represent North Carolina at the national finals in Washington, D.C. May 25-26.
DAVIDSON IB STUDENTS WALK FOR DARFUR SATURDAY
Davidson IB students will hold their 3rd annual “Community Walk for Darfur,” designed to raise awareness and also funds to help victims of violence in the Darfur region of Africa.
Students will be circling the Davidson green from 9 a.m. until noon, rain or shine.
The community is invited to join the event by walking with students, sponsoring a walker, or making a donation. Last year’s walk resulted in a check for $2,660 donated to the Genocide Intervention Network
BAILEY ORCHESTRA HOSTS BBQ FUNDRAISER
The Bailey Middle School Orchestra Patrons will host its inaugural “Bailey Bows & BBQ” on Saturday, April 24, at Bailey Road Park, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
The community-wide celebration of music will feature performances by local bands including Davidson Express, Music and Arts All-Stars, the Lake Norman Swing Band and more. Ice Cream, face painting, a cake walk and a bounce house will also be available, plus children will be able to visit an “Instrument Petting Zoo” provided by All Strings Attached.
Admission to the festival is free, but there will also be a BBQ fundraiser from 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. featuring a sandwich, drink and all the fixins. Tickets can be purchased in advance for $7 from Lake Norman Performing Arts in Northcross Shopping Center across from Target, Music & Arts in Rosedale Shopping Center in Huntersville and from any Bailey Orchestra Patrons member. A limited number of BBQ plates will be available at the music festival for $8.
Proceeds from “Bailey Bows & BBQ” will benefit the Bailey Middle School Orchestra program. This event is sponsored in part by Lake Norman Performing Arts, Music & Arts and Cornelius Parks and Recreation Department. In the event of inclement weather, the festival will be held at Bailey Middle School. For more information, contact: Cornelius Parks and Recreation, 704-892-6031 Ext. 160
- THURSDAY, APRIL 15 - Kristen Clewell, an occupational and sensory integration therapist from Integrative Therapy Concepts will offer a free public lecture on “Picky Eaters” at McKinney Academy. The event starts at 6:30 p.m. The lecture will teach parents the best ways to approach feeding a child and dispel myths around problem eaters. She will also provide specific ideas that parents can take home and implement immediately. Nicole Magryta, a Registered Dietitian, will also supplement the talk with healthy nutrition guidelines and approaches.
- SATURDAY, APRIL 17 – North Mecklenburg High School’s horticultural department will host their annual spring plant sale, 8 a.m. – noon, at the green house on the the school’s campus.
- SATURDAY, APRIL 17 – Davidson IB hosts “Community Walk for Darfur”
- SATURDAY, APRIL 17 - Woodlawn School will host a Spring Festival and Living History Day from 11 a.m. – 4 p.m. The event will feature food, fun, games, and craft booths, plus living history stations and tours of Stinson Hall, built in 1836 and listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
- SUNDAY, APRIL 18 – The Charlotte-based “College Admissions 101? will hold a seminar titled “Demystifying the College Application Process” on Sunday, April 18, from 2-5 p.m. at Lake Norman High School in Mooresville. Tickets are $120 per family in advance or $140 at the door. Register online by clicking on the company website, or call organizers Ellen Martin (704-543-0089) or Laura Lewin (704-281-7633). The event brings together 20 regional experts to speak on 10 panels (ticket holders can pick three), on topics like: writing a college admissions essay, SAT/ACT tips and strategies, financial aid and scholarships, the path to highly selective colleges, how colleges make admissions decisions, and more.
- MONDAY, APRIL 19 – Seventh Annual Tee It Up Golf Tournament for Davidson Day School will be held at the River Run Country Club, starting at 11 a.m. Click here to register online.
- THURSDAY, APRIL 22 -
Third annual Davidson Tigers v. J.V. Washam Hawks charity staff basketball game. The event benefits the Ada Jenkins Center, and pits teachers from the rival elementary schools playing for bragging rights. The Hawks will be the defending champs, having pulled out a squeaker win in 2009. Tipoff is at 6:30 p.m. at the Davidson College Belk Arena. The event is free. Donations to Ada Jenkins will be collected at the door.
- FRIDAY, APRIL 23 – The Community School of Davidson Annual Golf Tournament will be held at the Verdict Ridge Golf Club in Denver, NC., starting at 10 a.m. See the school webpage to learn more.
- SATURDAY, APRIL 24 - The Bailey Middle School Orchestra Patrons will host its inaugural “Bailey Bows & BBQ” on Saturday, April 24, at Bailey Road Park, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. See above for more details.