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All of the students who took part in the 2018 STEM Maker Challenge.

Local students go head-to-head with budding engineers from China

During the summer, First Landing Education ran the 2018 Future Engineer Youth STEM Maker Challenge UK, a 3-day competition with students from China and the UK. Form the Future spread the word to our network of schools about this exciting opportunity and supported the three British teams throughout the training and challenges.

One of our teams represented Comberton Village College and was made up of Lucy Smith, Emily Smith, Alex Warburton and Andrew Smith. They are excited to share their experience with you in this guest post!

From the 22nd to the 25thof August, our team of four enrolled in the 2018 Future Engineer Youth STEM Maker UK challenge. It began with a nine-hour training course with Arm employees, which involved coding sensors for smart home/smart city in preparation for the challenge on the Saturday!

The main challenge day started with meeting some of the guest speakers including Mr Xiaopeng HU (the first secretary, education section, Embassy of the People’s republic of China) and the Mayor of Cambridge who joined later in the afternoon.

We were then invited to start the “Internet of Things” race. We were taken into a separate hall where each team had a designated working area. We had two hours to create a smart home/smart city model, along with coding all the sensors represented in our smart home models. Once the competition had ended, the teams were called in by the guest judges from Arm to talk about their model and then get marked based on the quality of their coding and ideas.

The next competition took place after an authentic Chinese lunch where both the Chinese and British students could talk with one another. For the science fair, we decided to create a poster highlighting the issues with climate change and how to limit their impact. Once the judges called us in, we were asked to talk about our poster for five minutes. In this time we were also marked on teamwork as well as our ideas. It was really interesting to see how different science fairs are in the UK and in China!

The last competition of the day was a mix of science and drama. Each country nominated a few teams to participate in this event. The concept for each piece was about future advances for life in 2038 and ideas involved: AI technology, Virtual Reality, a Health section and a section on Data Security.

Once all the competitions had ended, there was a traditional Chinese dance performed by the students before the awards ceremony. At which point it was a shock to hear that our team had come second in the “Internet of Things” creative design race, but it was even more of a surprise when our team also received medals in the Science fair as well as the Science Drama competitions, in which we received a 2nd place medal in the Science fair and 1st place in the Science Drama competition!

Lucy Smith, Year 11 at Comberton Village College said:

Overall, I think all team members had a terrific day and we are all still in shock with the result!

If you are interested in finding out more about events like this one, or to learn how Form the Future can facilitate bespoke events for young people such as this, please get in touch!

Image credit: Molly Askham


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