Saturday, May 30, 2009

FIRST to present at World Science Festival!

Your team is invited to be part of the show.

FIRST has been invited to be part of the second annual World Science Festival in New York City at Washington Square Park in Manhattan on Sunday, June 14th.

Last year this event enabled us to spread the word about FIRST to hundreds and hundreds of families throughout the metropolitan region.

We still have a few slots available for FRC teams that would like to be part of this important outreach event.

If you have questions or would like more information, please click HERE.

Thank you for all you helping to bring the FIRST experience to kids across New York and New Jersey.


Randy Schaeffer
Regional Director
World Science Festival Street Fair

Sunday, June 14th

Washington Square Park in Manhattan
(near NYU campus)
Set-up -- 7:00am to 8:30am
Demonstrations-- 10:00am to 6:00pm

For information about the World Science Festival, please click HERE

For directions to Washington Square Park, please click HERE

Teams can bring their 2008 and/or 2009 machines
Pit tables, tents and electricity will be provided
Bring balls, tools, batteries, trophies, banners, etc.
Wear your team shirts
Space will be provided for bots to strut their stuff (not an actual game)
The more action the better.
To register, please click

Monday, May 25, 2009

Back From Manchester

Being away from the NYC ed/pol scene can be a good thing, especially in the FIRST environment where the focus is on creating wonderful experiences for kids - truly Children First. It is nice to see so many people who understand one of the prime missions in education. There is a great mix of educators, engineers and people from the business community. Many got involved as parents. A couple from Arkansas started out that way and now are handling the FLL in the state. They mentioned that Kris Bretton, one of the former members of a high school team called "The Bomb Squad," is now helping us in NY as a mentor. Kris called me later that evening to warn me to not corrupt them with my big city ways.

FLL is expected to have over 8000 teams in the US and Canada and 8000 more in 45 countries. That's over 16,000, so get your order in early. This was a North American conference and most states were represented, as was Haiti and Colombia.

We got an exclusive look at the new Smart Moves game but are embargoed from revealing details until Kickoff on Sept. 3.

Teachers who get involved in FLL say it is the best thing they do all year. Registration is open now. The season runs from the beginning of the school year through mid-March, with borough qualifying tournaments and a citywide at the Javits Center which will take place concurrently with the high school events (FTC and FRC).

Learn about all FIRST events:

FLL is for ages 9-14. Elementary, middle and even 9th graders in high school can take part. We had 150 teams from NYC take part in this past year's Climate Connections game.

Learn more about FIRST LEGO League:

Register a team (you can pay later):

Follow NYC robotics on my robotics blog.

Training and support are provided. Contact me if your school is interested.

Thursday, May 21, 2009


I'm in Manchester and on a break from the presentation on the new game. All I am allowed to say is WOW!

So register on the brand new registration web site early so you can get a team number.

You will no longer be assigned a team number just by starting the process. You must go through checkout before you get the number.

So far 20 NYC teams are registered.

So get on board. Remember, we often do things in the order of team numbers. So the earlier you register the better your options are for pit tables and order of presentation on research.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Partners Conf in Manchester

I'm up at the partners' conference in Manchester. There is a new registration system which I will check out tomorrow. Unfortunately, Noroko Morin has left FIRST and relocated to North Carolina. We will miss her terribly.

On Thurs, Scott Evans will present the new game and I will take some notes, which of course I can't share with you.

More on other events of interest as the week goes on.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

NYC’s Department of Youth and Community Development and FLL partner for a special tournament!

NYC’s DYCD and FLL have partnered to provide 40 after school programs an opportunity to compete in a local tournament. The tournament will take place from 9:00-3:00 on June 13th at NYU-Poly. This is part of a pilot program that DYCD has undertaken with the generous support of The Wallace Foundation.

Coaches for the teams have attended a training to get familiar with the kit of parts and this year’s challenge, Climate Connections. Teams will be judged on all the categories normally associated with a FLL competition.

We look forward to this tournament and are excited about new students getting to participate in what we know is a beneficial program to garner interest in science, technology, and math.


The NYC/NJ FLL Planning Committee