And then in our final competition, at the Arizona/New Mexico state finals, after everything that could go wrong, DID go wrong, we regrouped, and started winning. We were doing our personal best. We weren’t number one, but we were happy with our comeback.
When they handed out the various awards at the end (the ones that didn’t depend on how many points your robot scored), we didn’t win a single one- which was totally disappointing. But what’s more…two out-of-state teams basically swept the competition. It felt like the whole state lost. It felt unfair, and we were ticked- not just for us, but for really great teams that usually win, that didn’t. It was an incredibly disheartening end to a physically and emotionally exhausting three days.
We took a few days off and then met again. It was important for me to help them process this. We had an ice cream sundae bar because ice cream is total comfort food, and then we did some emotional work:
1. We talked about how much it stunk.
2.We watched this video clip about losing that made us laugh.
this video of a Russian rocket ship blowing up because they put the sensors on wrong, andthis video of catastrophic mistakes. Because, you know. . . misery loves company!
3. We talked about the good things.
4. We talked about what we could do differently.
5. We ate more ice cream.
Overall, the whole meeting turned out really well and we were able to end on a positive note. Everyone is feeling upbeat and positive about next year.