Design Trailblazers

Caption: Back from the left: Silvia van de Wiel Gr 11, The Glen High School, Noni Sidu Gr 12, Tersia King Learning Academy, Peladi Kekana Gr 12, Tersia King Learning Academy, Amy Gouws Gr 11, Pretoria High School for Girls. Front from the left: Palesa Mofokeng Gr 12, Tersia King Learning Academy, Maeko Motlokoane Gr 12, Tersia King Learning Academy. 

Design trailblazers come in all shapes and sizes and can be any age, as proved by six intrepid Gauteng school girls who will represent South Africa at the FIRST Lego League (FLL) in Pamplona, Spain at the end of May. As one of 90 Lego-building teams from 70 countries (only two from Africa), the I-SET Angels, as they have named themselves, will take along the Lego robot they designed to complete a number of set tasks. (read more) I-SET is Unisa's College of Science, Engineering and Technology’s community engagement flagship project that hosts theLego league aimed at stimulating children's interest in science, engineering, technology and mathematics by engaging in real world projects. Unisa will sponsor the girls on their trip overseas. The group, made of 16 and 17-year-olds from the Tersia King Learning Academy in Tembisa, The Glen High School in Pretoria and Pretoria High School for Girls also completed a community-based design project as part of the FIRST challenge. With the given theme of ‘The fury of Nature’ they engaged with the community of Kliptown informal settlement to find a solution for the flooding of their shacks. By doing a lot of research about informal housing, engaging with the end-users and brainstorming with their mentors, the girls came up with an innovative floating solution that also contributes to the use of waste material. This solution will be presented, together with their performing Lego robot, in Pamplona. To read more about the challenge and to follow links to worldwide FIRST Lego League news, go to