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05/09/2017

Learners in Nelson Mandela Bay will again be exposed to the excitement and benefits of science and technology when Nelson Mandela University’s School of Information Communication Technology hosts a regional qualifying tournament for the First Lego League (FLL) challenge.

FIRST® LEGO® League (FLL®) introduces young people, ages 9 to 16 (grades 4-10), to the fun and excitement of science and technology. Lego helps with building self-confidence, knowledge and valuable career and life skills. FLL challenges kids to think like scientists and engineers. Alongside adult coaches, FLL teams solve problems using research, engineering concepts, presentation techniques and robots. 

This year’s “Hydro Dynamics” challenge theme starts off with a Challenge Release Workshop at Nelson Mandela University on September 9, followed by the tournament that starts in October.

South Africa’s economic growth is presently being stifled by a severe skills shortage, particularly in the fields of science, technology, engineering, maths and accounting.

The introduction of the FLL challenge to South Africa, run by Nelson Mandela University’s School of ICT, is one of several interventions to introduce children to the benefits of science and technology and interest them in pursuing careers in these fields.

The FLL teams, alongside adult coaches, strive to solve problems using research, engineering concepts, presentation techniques and robots.

According to Nelson Mandela University School of ICT (Lego Robotics) public relations intern Siphe Mwellie, past FLL challenges have been based on topics such as nanotechnology, climate, quality of life for the disabled, and transportation.

“By designing our challenges around such topics, learners are exposed to potential career paths within a chosen challenge topic, in addition to solidifying the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Maths (STEM) principles,” she said.

After the September 9 Challenge Release Workshop, interested parties can attend additional workshops for pre-tournament training.

The FLL’s official launch workshop took place in August, after which the challenge documents are released.

The regional qualifying tournament takes place on October 27 and 28 at Nelson Mandela University’s Indoor Sports Centre. 

Picture: The winners of The 2016 FIRST LEGO LEAGUE Regional  Eastern Cape tournament, the LEGOminos

Contact information
Miss Siphe Mwellie
PR Intern
Tel: 27 41 504 3451
sictpr@mandela.ac.za