In a world where the importance of technology is growing by the minute, it comes as no surprise that educators understand the importance of focusing on STEM subjects: science, technology, engineering and mathematics. Programming is already gaining popularity, but there is another area of knowledge that involves all four letters of the acronym and deserves more attention in a school system that truly means to keep up with the times: robotics. Robotics and programming go hand in hand: the essential trait for a device to be defined as a robot is to be programmable to follow instructions, so it is possible to design a programming curriculum without robotics, but it is not possible to conceive a robotics class without programming. The advantage of having a robotics program in school, however, is that compared to a programming class, a course on robotics enhances multiple skills at once.
VEX is a entry to mid-level robotics competition targeted toward elementary to high school aged students. VRC offers the traditional challenge of a FIRST Robotics competition but with a more accessible and affordable robotics kit, while VEX IQ is designed for kids between age 8-14. The ultimate goal of VEX is to reach more young people with a lower-cost, more accessible opportunity to discover the excitement and rewards of science, technology, and engineering. The VEX competition has grown tremendously since it first started, with teams from over 100 countries competing for the world championship. The game challenge is different every year, and as such, many aspects change year-to-year.