A team of two third-grade students from Randall Pepper Elementary School in Fontana, California, has recently qualified for the World Robot Olympiad Friendship Invitational Tournament 2023 in Odense, Denmark. Keilani Aquino and Anthony Diaz-Flores, members of the school’s WRO Robotics Club, impressed judges during the WRO U.S. Open held in June and secured their spot in the international competition.
The students gained their knowledge in building and coding robots through club meetings held on Saturdays throughout the school year. The WRO Robotics Club is part of the school’s STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics) curriculum.
Randall Pepper Elementary School has fully embraced robotics programs, and the success of Aquino and Diaz-Flores in qualifying for the tournament has brought excitement to the school community. Principal Theresa Gomez expressed pride in the students’ achievements and the support they received from the school.
This is not the first time that Randall Pepper robotics students have earned the opportunity to compete at the international level. In 2019, a five-student team traveled to Denmark to participate in the World Robot Olympiad. That team received the International Friendship Award for their collaboration with teams from Germany and Nigeria.
The accomplishment of these students aligns with the school’s vision of sparking curiosity and providing pathways for students to explore STEM fields from an early age. The robotics program, initiated in 2019 by former principal Annette Beasley, aims to prepare students for higher grade levels and future career opportunities.
In addition to the WRO Robotics Club, Randall Pepper Elementary School also offers the SumoBot Club for fourth and fifth-grade students. The school emphasizes the importance of STEAM education by providing coding and earth science lessons on STEAM-tastic Wednesdays.
– Fontana Unified School District