Code Red’s 2017 FTC season began on September 9, but we started meeting a couple of weeks before the official 2017 FTC game animation and manual were released. Code Red supports 2 FTC teams, “5383 NEUTRINOS (Breaking the Laws of Physics)” and “5383 EMERGENCY SITUATION (Evacuate Now)”. Each one of our teams had 5 middle school aged students. There were 3 students returning from our last FTC season and 1 student coming from our NRG season last year, although 3 of our students were previously in NRG at one point.

This year’s game was Relic Recovery.  Relic Recovery consisted of moving and arranging glyfs in patterns to score points, balancing the robot on a balancing stone, moving jewels on the field, and by placing a relic in a recovery zone outside of the field perimeter.  It was a challenging but engaging game to play this year.  Besides designing and building robots to play this game, FTC students were busy preparing their Engineering Notebooks, pit displays, and a presentation for the judges at the competitions.  The team competed at the Kentwood and Big Rapids.  At both competitions, the teams went on to play in the tournaments.   While the teams did not qualify to go on to the State Championship, they learned much through the experience, making improvements on their robots and strategy and following the advice of the judges.

Code Red’s High School students mentor our FTC students, helping them brainstorm ideas and filling in as judges. Some FRC students volunteered at competitions. Throughout the season, our teams developed a strong family like bond, making them stronger as a team rather than as individuals. Students learned many life skills including teamwork, problem solving, programming, presentation skills, and strategy.

All in all both teams had a fantastic season, taking home the Control Award, and making eliminations at both events they competed in. Code Red could not be more proud of our teams, and we are excited to see where these talented kids will go.