STUDENTS have battled it out to win a trophy for designing the best scientific project using Lego bricks.

Four school girls from The Marist School, in Sunninghill won a prestigious 'First LEGO League Challenge' trophy at a regional tournament held at Queen Mary University in London.

The competition, held on January 26, got 28 schools to take part in a challenge based on a real-world scientific topic.

Beth Lane, head of computing at The Marist School, said: "We decided to participate in the First Lego League Challenge this academic year as it is the largest STEM competition in the world.

"It also has an excellent reputation as an academically rigorous, yet extremely rewarding for experience for our pupils.

"Science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) is a huge focus for The Marist as we realise the importance of an inspiring and inclusive hands-on curriculum for all of our pupils and aim to address the skills shortage and underrepresentation of females in STEM disciplines."

Students at the school are encouraged to take part in these subjects to break down the stereotypes of females working in science and technology based careers in the future.

On the day of the tournament, the girls presented to industry experts and participated in robotics and coding challenges in front of a large audience.

Beth added: "The group then decided to try and solve the problem of radiation should we send astronauts to the surface of Mars.

Since September 2018, pupils have been working on four different competition entries including designing and engineering a robot then coding it to complete complex tasks.

This is the first time that the Ascot school has entered the global and science and technology challenge.

Isabella, a year 7 pupil said: "I loved every minute of this competition.

"The tournament was really inspiring, I had no idea it would involve so many children from different schools.

"I was very nervous but our hard work paid off and we won best project. "