December 3, 2018, San Jose, CA: Team CENTER, a group of three Moreland Middle School students, is one of only five teams that advanced to the First LEGO Robotics Northern California Peninsula District Championship taking place December 16, 2018 at St. Francis High School in Mountain View. Mentored by former Moreland Middle School student, Aarushi Wadhwa, now a freshman at Westmont High School, Team CENTER formed at the Starbird Youth Center, as part of a collaboration with Aarushi’s organization Teens Teach STEAM, the city of San Jose, and Community United San Jose.
Middle school teams across the Bay Area addressed the problem statement under the theme, Into Orbit: Identify a problem during space exploration. Team CENTER, made up of 7th grader Jeshua P. and 8th graders Arshvir M. and Jaye R., decided to address the issue of unfulfilling showers in space. After research across multiple resources, including meetings with natural health experts and a field trip to NASA in Mountain View, the team created an innovative shower design that provides astronauts with a smart shower, including a velcro floor and shoes, recycled water and biodegradable bath accessories. After 10 weeks of collaboration and research, first-time competing Team CENTER showed exceptional results at the First LEGO Robotics qualifier tournament held at Google on November 3, 2018. Competing against 16 teams, Team CENTER placed 1st in the Project Category, 7th in the Robotics mission category, and was chosen as one of five teams to advance to the Northern California Peninsula District Championship.
Moreland School District teams have seen success in the past with First LEGO Robotics competitions, including Easterbrook Discovery School’s team, The RoboDawgs and Moreland Middle School’s Team ARZoo in 2016 and last spring with Moreland Middle School’s mixed school team Team SPAARK.