Thursday, March 03, 2011

You Are About to Enter a Robot Zone...

You are about to enter a robot zone... are you prepared?

Last Fall, you signed up with the SDA Robotics Club. You went through tech wheel and spent afternoons cleaning a metal shop.

For the love of robots, you built a float and entered the Holiday Parade!

By January you were immersed in day long planning, strategy, and design meetings for FIRST 2102 Team Paradox, and the LOGOMOTION FRC Challenge.

You survived six weeks of build, writing newsletters, writing grants, tracking the budget, eating pasta, lathing, wiring, programming, re-programming, printing T-shirts, sewing tiny horns on parrot heads... all while keeping up grades, doing chores, volunteering, saving whales, and being generally awesome.

The robot was finished, in record time, packed safely into its new deployment crate, and then there was down time. A moment to catch your breath... before THIS!

This is FRC time! This is FIRST Regional Competition season! And FIRST 2102 Team Paradox from San Dieguito Academy is headed to the playing field with not one, but two robots, ready to play LOGOMOTION with gracious professionalism, and a cooperative-competitive-winning spirit!

Are you ready?!

If you have never been to an FRC event, need a refresher, or are simply curious, then we would like to share some tips, suggestions, and rules about preparing for and heading to a FIRST Regional Competition, with particular attention to the glorious aspects of being with FIRST 2102 Team Paradox. To assist, we have pictures and memories from previous FRC events, and our very own Mini-Paradox, Maria O' Van Paradox.

Look what Maile did, for the first time! Great sewing. Nice horns, Maile!

At competition we will be meeting fifty-nine other teams... teams from all over the world. And to welcome them, and to make new friends, and build alliances, marketing developed the Parabox. This cute little Parrot-Ox-Box is complete with a shoulder strap, and comes full of team colors and spirit, in the shapes of buttons and bows!

Everyone is welcome to help cut, glue, sew, and admire Paraboxes... seriously, please see Lonnie, or Suki, or Annie, and help your team complete a hundred or so of these sweet alliance gifts!

The team has a uniform. The team has team colors. Red on the bottom, yellow on top, and Paradox all over.

To outfit the team, families, and friends, marketing has been crazy-busy in the screen-printing room.

Team shirts are affordable, beautiful, original designs made by students!

These collectible, fashion forward shirts are available in Sm, Md, Lg, and XLg. Buy one Listen to Elise, your wise president of corporate: Buy a fresh, clean, good smelling shirt for each day of competition!

Suki is working hard, so you can come to FRC prepared to sweat and look good!

Red on the bottom! This is not a suggestion... it's the law. And nobody breaks the law. Get crazy with it. Get your red pants! Red Skirt! Red tights! Top it with a tutu, cover it in buttons... just make it RED!

See? Yellow on top and Red on the bottom Right, Tom?

STOP! Hold everything. You are yellow and red, and Paradox all over, but are you registered? Are you on STIMS, is your permission slip turned in?! You cannot get a ride to competition, or visit the pits, or miss school, or have a busload of fun if you have not done the paperwork. Please, see Elise, and beg forgiveness, and make sure you are signed, checked, passed, and Paradoxed.

Alright, as long as we are covering official policy: Goggles. FIRST 2102 Team Paradox is a safe team, and safety at an FRC event, in the pits, means we wear goggles. Bring your own goggles, or safety glasses. This is new this year, and comes down from HQ. Goggles are going to be harder to come by this year, and our FRC Director, Bill, wants every student to be prepared with their very own pair.

Make 'em classy, like Olivia's. Make them classic, like Isaac's, but bring them, wear them, and keep it safe!

#1 Paperwork: do it.
#2 Goggles, and safety: know it.
#3 Red pants, yellow top, Paradox all over: wear it
#4 Sponsors: know them and thank them

Gratitude is a beautiful thing... it's part of Team Spirit. FIRST 2102 Team Paradox is all about Team Spirit! Team Spirit shows at school, in our metal shop, in our community, at FRC events, in the pits, and in the stands.

We love our teachers, coaches, mentors, our parents, volunteers. We love our friends and families, and we love it when they cheer with us, and for us. FIRST 2102 Team Paradox loves the sponsors that, through their large and small contributions, give the team the support necessary for all of this to be possible!

See us in the arena. You'll know it's FIRST 2102 Team Paradox, because we are standing up, dancing, and cheering for FIRST, for all the teams, for the love of learning and for the love of everyone that supports learning.

Betty, Kyla, and Erika
#5 Celebrate: have fun and share the joy!

Who are you inviting to FRC San Diego?
School pride, and robot fever cannot be contained. Bring your friends, bring your neighbor, invite your teacher... how about your principal? It's helps the team to have energetic, enthusiastic, smiling support to cheer with us. We love looking up in the stands and seeing that thunderous yellow and red Paradox mass of robo-loving geniuses!

What else?

I have to suggest: sleep Get some. Get plenty. The night before competition, if you want to look and feel this awesome:

You must be kind to your beautiful self. FRC days are long days, and your team is counting on you to be alert, organized, coherent, and spirited!

Isaac, our former and revered team president says, "I wanna feel the floor rumble and the air vibrate up here in Berkeley. I want your ballistic joy and your blinding energy to draw at my spirit from afar.

May your driving hands be deft, may your sharp minds feel guided, may your synergy be inspired.
Run. Make every step a bound. Run. I am running with you."

You are rested, dressed, now grab a bowl, it doesn't have to be team colors, but it could help. Eat some breakfast. Come to the arena ready to meet other teams and share your FIRST 2102 Team Paradox pride. Come fueled, and sharp. You will be talking to judges, sharing your knowledge of the robot, your team, your love of math and face paints.

Without enough sleep, without a healthy breakfast... you may come to competition feeling like this.

Oh dear.

FRC days are not for the weak. So, be prepared.

Let's review:

We need freshly laundered team shirts.

And plenty of them.

We need red on the bottom, and yellow on top, and Paradox all over.
Here's our chance to show our colors, wear our art, and make every step a bound!

FIRST 2102 Team Paradox is a robotics club, and it has creative, skilled, and brilliant members, new and old, all ready to give their best to their team!

We wear our uniforms, and our mascots dance and greet, they get the teams on their feet<--- hey, it rhymes!

We come rested and ready, so we can take initiative, contribute, assist, support, and be a winning team all weekend long.

Grab your hoodie, it could be cold!

Spread your colors! You want to be bold! <---another one!

Invite family and friends, and maybe ask them to bring food! Gosh, that's right, on Friday and Saturday, Team Paradox fixes a lunch for everyone! Holy Cow! Holy Paradox! That is awesome!

There will be dancing, so wear closed toed shoes... no flip-flops in the pit, dude.

Remember Team San Diego! We love our fellow county teams, like the Aluminum Narwhals, and those totally cool Midnight Mechanics! And fifty-seven other teams will be there to meet, cheer, and exchange buttons with! Go robotics!

You are ready!
Prepared, goggled, rested, fed, happy, red, yellow, blue and Paradox all over. FIRST 2102 Team Paradox is in the Robot Zone!

Helpful Links:

FRC Director, "Bill's Blog," for updates, useful suggestions, and rules.

San Diego FIRST Regional Event: March 10-12

Teams Competing in San Diego FRC

Las Vegas FIRST Regional Event: March 31 - April 2

Teams Competing in Las Vegas FRC


test said...

"Wow" I am beat after looking at all this pictures, you have more energy then three of me.
Great job Lady's and Gentleman and I am sure a lot of Moms and Dads.

Tami @ Lemon Tree Tales said...

Go Paradox!!!

Oddly enough the other night I was at a class at my LQS to learn how to use the embroidery module on my machine. The instructor was talking about how her daughter and her classmates were busy on two embroidery machines sewing robot designs and they had to do it themselves. So I asked if this was by chance for FIRST and she said yes! Small world, no? I would never have known about this without learning all about it here on Chickenblog. :-)

judy in ky said...

Amazing kids! I like Maria's stance in photo number two... that is Maria, isn't it?

Anonymous said...

Great overview of the robotics life. While Team 2102 is in San Diego, our Miss Daisy will be competing in Florida. Good Luck! Jeanette
PS Love your T-shirts!

Natalie, the Chickenblogger said...

Lucky Florida! I am sure Miss Daisy will be shining in the sunshine state! I will be sure to tell Suki about your sweet comment.

Maria is standing *robot* tall... she has so much fun, all the time!

So cool... I am more than happy to share the world of FIRST and robots... as you can plainly see. Hearing from friends like you makes it totally worthwhile. Wouldn't I just love to give an embroidery machine a try! Fun! Thank you btw for the helpful mascot suggestions... I may be in over my head a tiny bit.

Random, I am getting you some team colors!

Michael, the real exhaustion comes after the last day of matches... I am sorely out of shape for the hurdles that are ahead!!

Everyone, thank you for commenting and sharing your support. The fun of cheering wildly is greatly enhanced when friends are *there* with you and joining in the dance!

Cheyenne -Millie said...

Wow! So much energy and talent!

Natalie, the Chickenblogger said...

We can barely keep up!
Thank you for dropping by!