Sphero is excited to collaborate with STEM It Up Sports, a national nonprofit organization, to bring the Sphero Global Challenge in person to hundreds of learners in the Dallas-Fort Worth, Austin, and Houston communities.
Sphero and STEM It Up Sports share the same vision for the Sphero Global Challenge: to provide the opportunity to explore computer science for all students. Together, the objective is to make the Sphero Global Challenge competition experience fun and accessible, and to create a welcoming environment, to any and all who are interested.
The Sphero Global Challenge presented by STEM It Up Sports offers two distinct pathways for participation: virtual and in-person events. Here's how they relate to each other and to the Sphero World Championship (SWC):
In-Person Pathway to the Sphero World Championship:
- October 19, 2023: Deadline to register for regional Texas competitions through STEM It Up Sports
- November 4, 11, & 18, 2023: Regional Invitational for in-person Texas events (locations below)
- January 2024: Submission Directions and Office Hours Webinar
- January 21, 2024: In-Person State Competition Registration Deadline
- February 14, 2024: Deadline for virtual submissions if not competing in the Texas State Tournament
In-Person Texas Sphero Global Challenge Event Dates:
- November 4, 2023: Dallas, TX Regional Invitational
- November 11, 2023: Austin, TX Regional Invitational
- November 18, 2023: Houston, TX Regional Invitational
- March 2, 2024: Texas State tournament
Note: Teams have the option to participate in official in-person Sphero Global Challenge competitions presented by STEM It Up Sports. Teams that place 1st, 2nd, or 3rd in their age bracket at these in-person events will directly qualify for the SWC. In-person competitions are standalone and offer a chance for teams to gain experience and prepare for higher-level tournaments.
Navigating the Sphero Global Challenge Journey
Teams can choose the pathway that suits them best: virtual or in-person. In-person regional tournaments hosted by STEM It Up Sports provide an opportunity for practice and preparation for the state-level tournament. The state-level tournament serves as an alternate route to SWC qualification, allowing teams to showcase their skills and innovation in a live setting. Participating in regional events (dates listed above) is recommended to enhance readiness for the state tournament. The ultimate goal for all pathways is to secure a spot in the SWC, where the top teams from both virtual and in-person routes compete.
Anticipating Future Expansion: Bringing Sphero Global Challenge to More Communities
As we embark on this exciting in-person journey with the Sphero Global Challenge, we're thrilled to share that our commitment to fostering innovation, learning, and teamwork in Texas is just the beginning. We envision a future where the Sphero Global Challenge becomes accessible to even more communities, creating opportunities for students across the nation to dive into the world of STEM and robotics.
While we're currently focusing our in-person events in Dallas-Fort Worth, Austin, and Houston in collaboration with STEM It Up Sports, we're excited to reveal that our hope is to extend far beyond these areas. The Sphero Global Challenge is set to grow and evolve, reaching new destinations and engaging with aspiring problem solvers from coast to coast.
Our goal is to provide students with a broader range of opportunities to participate in the Sphero Global Challenge in person, bringing the excitement of robotics competitions to a location near you.
As the Sphero Global Challenge gains momentum and garners enthusiasm, we look forward to unveiling new event locations that will allow students to showcase their skills, creativity, and teamwork on a grander stage. Stay tuned for updates as we continue to build and strengthen our community of STEM enthusiasts, one region at a time.
FAQs for In-person Texas Events
Do I need to attend both regional and state competitions?
If your team is going to compete in person, the regional tournaments will help your team prepare and understand how the State tournament will operate. Regional tournaments are not required to participate in the State tournament, but they are incredibly helpful for the teams.
Do I need to compete entirely virtually or entirely in person?
No, teams can practice by competing in a regional invitational and then enter submissions virtually instead of competing in the State Championships.
Is there an in-person option for the indi event?
Teams competing in the indi event are able to attend the regional and state level events in Texas. When you fill out the registration form for your team, simply state that you will attend in-person tournaments, and someone from STEM It Up Sports will reach out to you regarding your in-person tournament registration.
Do I need to physically be in Texas to compete?
Teams that are submitting their work virtually can be located anywhere in the world. If your team would like to attend an in-person tournament, Texas is the only location for qualifying events hosted by STEM It Up Sports in Season 4. Travel to the in-person events is not sponsored by Sphero, STEM It Up Sports, or the Sphero Global Challenge.
Do I need separate registration for in-person competition?
After completing the purchase of your Sphero Global Challenge registration from sphero.com, you will receive an email that will ask your team how they plan on competing: in-person or virtually. If you select in-person, a representative from STEM It Up Sports will reach out to you to coordinate registering for the in-person tournaments.