Pupils from Parklands College and Sinenjongo High School will represent South Africa at an international robotics competition in Germany next month.
Three teams from Parklands College and one Sinenjongo High School team from Joe Slovo, which is mentored by Parklands College, have been selected to represent South Africa in the World Robot Olympiad (WRO) International final.
The WRO is an annual global robotics event, incorporating science, technology, engineering and mathematics (Stem) education.
The teams were selected at the WRO national competition held in Johannesburg in September.
The members of Team Triple Tech, from Parklands College, were crowned champions in the Future Innovators category for their Amazing Water Rover, which delivers water, responds to emergencies and delivers medical supplies to rural communities.
The team is made up of Grade 5 pupils Elihle Hadebe, Isabella Ankiah, and Tendeka Njukuya.
Isabella said they knew what they were up against in the national competition, but the international stage would be different.
Tendeka said it felt great being a champion.
TechnoBlade, from Parklands College, were crowned South African champions in the Robo Mission category for their automated garden robot.
The team is made up of Grade 6 pupils Veer Atwaru, Matthew Francke and Luan Odendaal.
“I am excited to see the cool things they have to show us in Germany,” said Veer.
Matthew said he could not wait to go to Germany as it would be his first overseas trip.
Luan said he is excited about taking the train when they get to Germany and meeting other teams.
Team Robodog – comprising Parklands College Grade 11s Johnny Zhu, Lethabo Nodoba, and Ioannis Papadakos – built a self-driving car to navigate a road-simulation course, and they won gold in the Future Engineers category.
The Rock Boyz, from Sinenjongo High School, took gold in the Robo Sports Tennis category. Their robot is programmed to play simulation tennis. The team is made up of Grade 11 pupils Elihle Zenzile, Wesley Dickson Madzivadondo and Prachazal Kimbini.
Parklands College social-media coordinator Ellie Clews said it was a very special achievement because it proved that any pupil with the right opportunities, talent and time could succeed.
School teacher and robotics coach Justine de Wet said the teams had worked very hard and she was proud of them.
“These guys were at school every day until 5 in the afternoon working on their robots, and they would also be at school on Saturdays. They’ve earned it, and hopefully they will do well.”
The international WRO competition will be held in Dortmund, Germany, from Thursday November 17 to Saturday November 19. The theme for this year’s competition is “My Robot, My Friend”, which is connected to the ways in which robots can help humans at home, in emergency situations and health care.