Photo caption: Charlotte Central School (CCS) coders and engineers took the Rookie Inspiration Award at the robotics competition. Pictured in the front row, l-r, are Raxa Tariyal, Hadley Bergeson, and Sarah Stein, and in the back row are Max Ford, teacher Allan Miller, Kyle Franko, Alden Valjevac, Leah Rauch, and Deacon Ford. Photo by Becky Bergeson.

Charlotte Central School’s first LEGO robotics team ever came away from the Vermont FIRST LEGO League Vermont State Championships with the Rookie Inspiration Award on December 8 at Norwich University.

Recognized for their “outstanding success in advancing respect and appreciation for engineering and engineers, both within their school, as well as in their community,” the team of middle school students competed against other teams from around the state with LEGO robots.

During the competition, students completed a set of 15 robot challenges that they coded and engineered themselves, plus they had to complete a long-term engineering project and present it to the judges.

CCS students on the team noticed that they had friends at school who couldn’t play on the playground because of accessibility issues, and their project examined how accessibility could be improved. The students made a plan for improvements that they will bring to the school board in the future.

Allan Miller, who coached the team and is the digital and transformational learning coach at CCS, said, “As a first-year robotics team they did amazing, laying a great foundation for future CCS teams.”