About Metal Minds

OUTREACH TEAMS.  Taking expressions of interest. 
Metal Minds Robotics are starting up teams across the state. If your child has no access to a robotics team and they would like to be part of a FIRST Lego League team please contact Kathryn at admin@metalmindsrobotics.com wherever you are in Tasmania.

Check out below for team details.  Our latest team has started up in LaTrobe covering Devonport and surrounds.  

 Metal Minds Robotics Inc.  

Started in 2013 by Harry with his friends, Damon, Alex, Emma and Matthew and their two mentors Jon and Bruce. Today Metal Minds has grown and has around 20 members and several mentors.     Our teams have also won several awards.  We have three tiers,  FLL (FIRST Lego League),  FTC (FIRST Tech Challenge)  and FRC (FIRST Robotic Competition).

Competing in competition is dependent on funding and engagement of the student.  We aim to take the children to competition each year, after several months of workshops and coaching to bring them up to competition standard.

Want to join us?

For a child to join our teams they must be 11 years or older.   Our intake is in February, we offer places to existing members first and any spaces that become available thereafter are offered to a child on our waiting list.  It is preferable that children 11 – 15 years have some experience programming an EV3/ using Lego Technic and children over 15 years have some experience using hand tools, maths and/or programming Java.

Team members are expected to fully engage in the program and undertake any homework and research set by the mentors.    If a student disengages or becomes disinterested regularly the mentors will contact the parents and discuss if robotics is the right thing for them and whether they should continue.

Offseason is February to August.  Competition season is August to December.  During the offseason, students are taught, design, build, programming and teamwork, these are things that cannot be done in the short window of time once the competition season starts.

For more information please click here

We have yearly subscriptions to assist with the running of the teams.   The subscriptions do not cover all the running costs and costs such as travel and accommodation to the national competitions are in addition.  Subscriptions are payable in one payment or 3 payments on invoice.  All subscriptions are expected to be paid by the end of the financial year (June). Subscriptions are non-refundable.

We mentor children from 11- 18 years in program, design, CAD and build of robotics using Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM).
Research challenges facing today’s scientists
Design, build, test and program robots.
Apply real-world math and science concepts
Learn critical thinking, team-building, public speaking and presentation skills
Participate in public events,  tournaments and celebrations
Understand and practice Gracious Professionalism@

Our Goals

Metal Minds goal each year is to teach children how to work together, to teach them to treat each other as equals, whether that is their teammate, ally or their opponent.  

Our mentors are all volunteers.   They are also learning new techniques and challenges as the workshops evolve and the software and challenges change.
We encourage the children to speak up, to think for themselves, to look at what they are doing and evaluate how it went… if it worked, what did they do right and if it didn’t why?  Even in competition, they need to be able to think on their feet and work it out in a short time frame.
We encourage students to hold presentations about the teams to schools, community groups and officials. 

Meet the mentors

    • Ray McNamara. FLL/FTC Mentor. Specialises in NXT/EV3 and Robot C Programming. Assists with outreach teams
    • Alex Mountney (25)  FTC & FRC Mentor. Mechatronics Engineer. Founding Team Member.
    • Harry Heathcote (22) FLL/FRC Mentor. Queen’s Scout.  Founder. FTC/FLL Mentor
    • Jon Heathcote. FRC Mentor.  Software Electrical and Automation Engineer for SAGE Automation Tasmania. Assists with outreach teams.
    • Simon Fowler.  FTC mentor.
    • Warren Kidman. FRC/FTC lead mentor. Tech team, Tasmania Dept of Health
    • Jodie Mitchell.  FLL Mentor. School TA
    • Simon Va de Aa. FLL Mentor
    • Alison Wilde. FLL Mentor Mersey team
    • Lindsay Notley. FLL Lead Mentor Mersey team
  • Listen to the team being interviewed.

Founding and past members

  • Dr Bruce Pearce.  Particle Physicist.  FTC Mentor
  • Emma Hodgkinson. She designed the teams logo. Founding Past Team Member.  2013- 2016
  • Damon Ercole  Founding past Team Member. 2013- 2015
  • Matthew Pearce  Founding past Team Member. 2013- 2014
  • Nicholas Pearce. Past Team Member. 2013- 2015

Our Club consists of 4 teams. 

   FIRST Robotics Competiton Team.  FRC. 16  – 18 yrs.

Joining this team is dependent on the students ability and progress from FTC. We suggest a student does a couple of years in FTC before moving to FRC. 

  • Mentored by: Warren, Jon, Harry and Alex 

FIRST Tech Challenge Team.  FTC. 15 – 18 yrs.

  • Mentored by:  Warren, Simon F and Alex

  FIRST Lego League Team Launceston. FLL.  11- 15 yrs of age

  • Mentored by:  Ray, Simon VdA, Jodie, Assisted by Harry when required

FIRST Lego League Team Mersey. FLL. 10 – 15 yrs.
Covering Latrobe, Devonport and surrounds.

  • Mentored by: Alison and Lindsay.  



Chair: Fiona Turner. Owner/Partner: Bitwiseag. Senior Consultant Nukon. President Startup Tasmania. Owner: Jinglers Creek Vineyard.
Vice Chair: Harry Heathcote. Tech team Scotch Oakburn College. 

Secretary: Kathryn Heathcote. admin@metalmindsrobotics.com
Treasurer: Wendy Mountney.  treasurer@metalmindsrobotics.com

Committee Members:
Public Officer: Jon HeathcoteSAGE Automation. State Manager https://au.linkedin.com/in/jonathanheathcote 

Dave Kay Owner: DK accounting Launceston.https://au.linkedin.com/in/davidkewley
Email: fundrasing@metalmindsrobotics.com.

Hayden W.  FRC representative
Eileen Stevenson. Parent representative

Andrew Adams. Owner/partner Autofi. https://au.linkedin.com/in/andrew-adams-409ab0b3
Warren Kinman. Mentor. Tech team Department of Health 
Simon Van de Aa. FLL representative and mentor 




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