Last year was also our first year. We, too, had a very short time from package opening to the competition. We didn't really have any real competitive goal beyond actually BUILDING the robot and making it move. We did make it a kid-centered work ethic - while we were there to encourage them to try again, try again, try .... you get the picture and just guided the timeline. Even though a couple of us come from engineering backgrounds and are type A personalities, we actually refrained from getting our hands in the pot. The kids just plain, took ownership of each of the areas and were just happy to get to a point of being with other teams. They had the thrill of seeing other teams show their stuff. Perhaps we are unique in that aspect, but we were all just tickled to be included in something so fresh for our school. We put our special NoVA parents in charge of spirit wear, food/snack coordination, and carpools - and STRESSED that this event is done by and for the kids. Anyway, just wanted to share. Each team is so unique and it is all a learning experience - and so much fun!
See you soon - if you're at OP!
Penn ES Robotics