Packed and Ready for Competition, RoboGenesis Bides Time with Community Service

Ed Novak and Team RoboGenesis - Photo Ed Novak

The Clarke County High School Robotics Team has packed away their robot as they complete final preparations for the highly anticipated FIRST competition in Richmond. Per competition rules the robot was “Bagged and Tagged” on February 22nd. This early packing rule is to ensure that all teams will have the same amount of time to work on their robots regardless of the distance they must travel. Otherwise teams closest to the competition who have brief ship times would have an unfair advantage. The team has taken this down time in stride and used this pause before the competition to work on a “playful” community service project.

Raise High the Roof Beam Carpenters - Photo Ed Novak

The Robotics Team under the leadership of Technology Educator and FIRST Mentor, Ed Novak has turned their combined energies to bear on construction of a playhouse for Habitat for Humanity. The materials and base design were provided by Habitat for Humanity and the First Team is providing all of the labor to build the playhouse. The structure is currently being built in the tech-lab at the Clarke County High school and will be trucked to its final destination once completed. Team members have worked on all facets of construction and have learned skills from basic layout to framing and roofing. The team is currently finishing application of asphalt shingles and hopes to have the project completed before they leave for the FIRST competition in Richmond.

The team will be traveling to Richmond Thursday April 7th at 5:30AM.   The three day event is being held at Virginia Commonwealth University and begins with set-up and inspection on Thursday. This year 63 teams are registered for the Virginia FIRST Robotics Competition event. Matches begin on Friday and   continue into Saturday.

This year each team will compete in the FIRST Robotics Competition game, LOGO MOTION, which includes “pick up and place,” where robots try to hang inflated shapes on pegs of various heights.   Specific combinations will score additional points.   In the final seconds, robots have the opportunity to deploy “minibots” to climb high towers for an exciting end game that can quickly change the final outcome. Below is an animated look at the 2011 game LOGO MOTION.



  1. trthseeker says:

    Nice job!!! Good luck in Richmond, we’ll all be cheering for you!

  2. Kevin Lambert says:

    Mr. Novak is one heck of a teacher! Best of luck to all!

    • Tony Parrott says:

      I agree! Mr. Novak has done a great job with these kids. For a small school system we are truly blessed to have this opportunity for our kids.

      Good Luck!

  3. Interested bysitter says:

    Nice work, one and all. It’s nice to see such altruism and effort on display. Well done, Mr. Novak and the team. Good luck in Richmond!

  4. Laura Stevens says:

    Recognize a lot of the young faces, some very bright boys in there. Congratulations to Mr. Novak for the expert guidance and support he gives the team and congratulations to the students for rising to the challenges of the competition. Good Luck!

  5. Laura Kitselman says:

    Mr. Novak is one of the treasures of CCHS. His energy, creativity, knowledge, dedication and love of teaching are truly inspiring. The FIRST robotics competition is challenging, to say the least, and my hat is off to the entire team for their enthusiasm, long hours of hard work, and perseverance.