Indigenous students at Toolooa State High School in Gladstone are set to roar in the regions upcoming robotics competition (August 2 Rockhampton) following an automation and robotics workshop by a leading robotics expert at the school.
The Toolooa Indigenous Group Robotics (TIGeR) team is prepared for an outstanding performance in the competition following a visit by Damien Kee of Domabotics.
It will be the first time the TIGerRs have entered the event.
The workshop is part of the school’s Queensland Minerals and Energy Academy (QMEA) Robotics Futures Program, supported by Shell’s QGC business.
Taking the Indigenous culture and melding it with robotics, the students, guided by Damien, programmed robots to replicate traditional dance steps performed by former students from the school.
“Inspiring a passion for science and the potential future it can bring is very exciting”, said Shell QGC’s National Social Performance Manager, Simon Nish.
“Using engineering, programming and mathematics skills and linking it with their traditional Indigenous culture is an ideal fit for what we are trying to achieve by supporting the QMEA Robotics Program,” he said.
“Our investment in programs such as this supports local and Indigenous young people to grow into meaningful jobs in the future.
“The good news for these students is that last year, Indigenous employment grew by 11 percent in Queensland’s resources sector and we hope to see many of these students come and work for us in trade and professional fields.
“It’s important for students to understand the role of robotics and technology in the careers of the future and it’s a fun and hands-on way to relate their classroom learning to the real world.”
“Our students learnt more in one hour than most people do in five, so it was fantastic to watch,” said Brad Eggmolesse, Manager of Toolooa SHS’s Indigenous Unit.
“All of the students are keen to continue the robotics work and aim for a great showing at the robotics competition.
“Past students from our dance troupe will come back to help the robotics team map out the dance movements and how to combine this to programming. Everyone wants to play a role, which will put our team in a good position.”
“We learnt to program our robots using different pieces of code and how to make sure we are accurate in measurement and movements. It was such a great morning,” said TIGeR student Rachael Hodges.
Along with Toolooa SHS students, Damien also worked with three primary schools in the region upskilling both teacher and students. Clinton, Tannum Sands and Gladstone Central state schools all benefited from Damien’s visit.
“A big thank you to QMEA and Shell’s QGC Robotics Futures program as this opportunity not only got our students on track and taught them the basics we had missed, but guided us on how to run a more efficient and effective robotics club,” said Tracey Dunnett, QMEA Digital Capital Champion and Clinton State School’s Digital Technologies Specialist Teacher.
“Damien was encouraging and informative on how class teachers could use this technology in the classroom to support their curriculum rather than the devices driving the curriculum.”.