Homemade robots duke it out in ‘Sumobot’ competition


PEORIA (WEEK) — After several weeks of learning how to build and control robots, young members of the Illinois Math Academy put their skills to the test Saturday in a “Sumobot” competition at Peoria Northwoods Mall.

Using special building kits, teams of two to three students built robots and had them duke it out on an elevated platform.

Similar to sumo wrestling, the winner of each round was the robot that could push its opponent off the edge of the ring.

The kits came with sensors, hardware and a special “brain” that controls the robot’s movements.

“The boys and girls learn not only how these sensors interact with the brain, but how to code that, so the robot does exactly what they want it to do. So it teaches them some skills in coding and machine control,” said Gene Scheider of the Illinois Math Academy.

Schneider said the competition also gives students a chance to learn about math, engineering and problem-solving.

He said students who are interested in joining a Lego league should ask their school principal for more information.

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