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Teens Compete In Robot Lego Contest To Help Seniors

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SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – Most kids like to play with Legos, but one competition is taking it to a whole other level.

Teens from all over Northern California were showing off their innovative skills by creating robots using the colored blocks. The goal of the project was to make life easier for senior citizens.

When you hear the word Lego, most assume it’s a just a toy.

“At first, I thought it was a little kiddy thing kids played with, right?” said one competitor.

However, these teens are turning Legos into moving robots.

“There’s a lot of nerves in the air, you just feel it,” said Jake Honnold.

At the capital district’s FIRST LEGO League Championship at Inderkum High School in Sacramento, teams came up with a research project to help seniors to solve real world problems with robots.

“Our project was about helping patients with Alzheimer’s and assisted-living facilities,” said Honnold.

They used special tracking tags to keep them safe.

“It was a noninvasive way, so it defended their privacy. It also helped track their medications,” said Honnold.

Another team’s project prevents seniors from accidentally falling.

“It’s a cane that alerts authorities when senior’s fall, and when they hold it at the wrong angle,” said one girl.

Honnold says it gave him a new perspective on the senior community.

“You want to help them. It felt great to do that,” he said.

However, it wasn’t the easiest task.

“It’s a lot of trial and error,” said Honnold.

It caused tensions to run high.

“There have been fights along the way,” said Honnold.

But in the end, working together as a team brought a sense of accomplishment for these kids.

“We’re pretty much all sisters now,” said another competitor.

The first place winning team will receive an invitation to the USA open championship.

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