Friday, December 10, 2010

Junior FIRST LEGO League Update from Keith Wynne

The NYCNJ FIRST Planning Committee is pleased to announce that registration is now full for the upcoming Junior FIRST LEGO League Exposition at the Jacob Javits Convention Center for Sunday March 13th, 2011!

We are excited to have 20 teams confirmed and look forward to sharing an exciting weekend of FIRST Programming for all ages as we celebrate this year's theme of "Body Forward" with children from the New York City Metropolitan Area.

All inquiries regarding participation and registration should be directed to the NYC JrFLL Chairperson, Keith Wynne by contacting him at:

The NYC NJ FIRST Planning Committee is pleased to announce a unique and exciting opportunity for JrFLL Coaches and Programs who have registered multiple teams.  Due to increasing demand, our registration is currently capped for the upcoming Exposition at the Jacob Javits Convention Center on Sunday March 13th, 2011.

We are currently able to offer an opportunity for teams and programs with multiple registrations  to showcase their research projects and models at the upcoming Brooklyn Borough Qualifying Tournament at NYU Polytechnic University on Saturday January 8th.  We have space for 4-6 teams to set up a table and share their accomplishments with the 50 FLL teams who are participating in the tournament.   There is no cost to participate and the event will not be judged.   It will, however, afford your students a unique opportunity to network and share their projects with FLL Teams as well as observe an FLL Tournament in action.

Interested teams and coaches should contact Keith Wynne via e-mail at: by Friday December 17th, so we can reserve table space for you and your teams.

Thank you for your continued support of FIRST programming in New York CIty!

Sincerely Yours,

Keith A. Wynne

Elementary Science Specialist
P.S. 58 The Carroll School
330 Smith Street
Brooklyn, N.Y. 11231
JrFLL Chairperson for the NYCNJ FIRST Planning Committee

Thursday, November 25, 2010

FLL Active Teams as of Nov. 25, 2010

Brooklyn (53)

Team# School Number Contact
1084 St. Edmunds Elementary School Christine Zaremba
1221 PS 94 K Alfredo A. Pelaez
1222 PS 94 K Alfredo A. Pelaez
1525 PS 58 The Carroll School  Keith Wynne
Roger Levy
1532 Bedford Academy Cluny Lavache
Deji Komolafe
1647 PS 193 The Gil Hodges School Stacy Solomon
Carol Geier
Cynthia McGinty
2187 IS 383 K
Philippa Schuyler MS
Lindrick Outerbridge
William Hamlet
2422 Genesis at Xaverian Mr. James P. Schreiner
2558,2559 MS 88 K Nancy Azcona

2913 MS 51K James Hoffman
3016 MS 447 K The Math & Science Exploratory School Charl L. Castelyn
Sidney Izakson
3073 PS 8 K Brandeis Hayes
Tracey Pozluszny
3074 PS 8 K Brandeis Hayes
Tracey Pozluszny
3143 MS 447 K The Math & Science Exploratory School Charl L. Castelyn
Sidney Izakson
3144 MS 447 K The Math & Science Exploratory School Charl L. Castelyn
Sidney Izakson
3238 Brooklyn Tech HS Gordon Williams
3309 IS298- Dr.Betty Shabazz Prep Ms. Donna M. Gobin  347-451-6759
3749 PS 21K Crispus Attucks School Donna Johnson
Carla Arnold
4371 PS 11K  Purvis J Behan School Rasheda Lyons
Carlo Yuvienco
4375 PS 233K  Langston Hughes Jennifer Humphrey
Dawne Jokinsky
4384 Police Athletic League Brownsville Beacon Community Center  Diane N. Shirley
4385 PS 399 K Stanley Eugene Clarke Sharon Holiday
4389 PS 636 K Young Scholars’ Academy for Discovery and Leonarda Huertas
4581 MS 113K Ronald Edmonds Learning Center Jeffrey Stephens-Prince
4968 Home Schoolers of Brooklyn Ted Z. Doudak
5120 Urban Assembly Institute of Math & Science for Young Women Noam Pillischer
Nzinga Ebron
5131 PS 5K Kesha S. Townsel
5135 PS 256K Michael Smith  
5171 PS 3k Ryan F. Cain 
5218 IS 318K Russ Holstein
Eric Windley
5330 Police Athletic League I.S. 218 Beacon Cathy Joseph
5354 Mott Hall Bridges Academy Mr. William S. Principal 
5681 Packer Collegiate Inst. Maureen Reilly
5683 Packer Collegiate Inst. Maureen Reilly
6720 CAMBA Charmaine Moel
6897 PS 9 K Monique Moore
6905 CAMBA  Kariba Lang-Williams
8706 Excellence Boys Charter School Chris Kang
Gordon Hall
8870 Sunset Park Prep MS 821K Franky Gutierrez
Michael Barry
9465 LIU Michael Randazzo
9920 PS 147k Ben Talbot
9978 PS 305k Javier Reyes
10587 PS 372 K Rita Fasano
Vicki Holland
Haiva Albuliwi
10590 PS 372 K Vicki Holland
Haiva Albuliwi
10763 Fort Green Prep Academy Saranii Muller
11305 Packer Collegiate Inst. Maureen Reilly
11308 Packer Collegiate Inst. Maureen Reilly
11853 Ground Work Inc Tracy Caldron
11854 Ground Work Inc Tracy Caldron
11856 Boys and Girls High School Tanya Wardally
11857 Benjamin Banneker Academy K Imani Fischer
11858 Bedford Academy Cluny Lavache
Deji Komolafe
11912 PS 261K Scott Howard
Emilie Williams


Team# School Number Contact
864 MS 67Q Ruta Dave
1103  PS 148Q Mike Farrell
1104  PS 148Q Mike Farrell
1209 PS 52 Q Lois Harris
1801 IS 119 Q Chris Dudin
1803 IS 119 Q Chris Dudin
2551 Cambria Center Sheryl Liles
Sheree Palmer

3118 MS 8Q Angela P. Green
3140 IS 125 Q Rudy Vera
3423 Resurrection Ascension Katie Lee Zipprich
Joane Heppt

3719 Forest Hills Team Iffat Mai
3743 Forest Hills Team Iffat Mai
3744 Forest Hills Team Iffat Mai
3745 Forest Hills Team Iffat Mai
4348 PS 71Q Janna T. Carbone
4539 PS 94Q Peter Glus
5140 IS 49Q Noah Schumacher
5144 Goodwill Industries Nicole Lupinacci
Kelvin Montero  
5596 Cross Island YMCA Beacon Center @IS 210Q Trevon Adams
Marie C. Turenne
6307 RoboMindTech Dennis Chan
6811 New York Junior Tennis League at IS 61Q Marjorie Desir
6903 Samuel Field Y-Beacon MS 172 Alexander PiƱeiro
6915 PAL Far Rockaway Beacon Shanel McLemore
Jeffrey Moye
8675 MS 216Q George Ryan Peter Xanthus
8909 Louis Armstrong IS 227 Q Joshua BlumRichard Akalski/
9059 IGoodwill Beacon 141 at 1S 141 Q Mrs. Nicole Dinolfo
9114 RoboMindTech Dennis Chan
9236 The Garden School John Hale Peter Glus
9504 PS/MS 84Q Maria Tsiros
9584 RoboMindTech Dennis Chan
9658 Edward Bleeker JHS 185 Primal Dhillon
9661 Edward Bleeker JHS 185 Primal Dhillon
9901 PS 85Q Bob Deming
10227 The Development Organization Reaching Children to Achieve Success Tiffany  V. Williams
10994 The Garden School John Hale Peter Glus
11413 PS 128Q Juniper Valley  Michael Zwicker
11415 PS 128Q Juniper Valley  Michael Zwicker
11426 Louis Armstrong IS 227 Q Richard Akalski/ Joshua Blum
11596 The Boys’ Club of NY - The Abbe Makazi I. Mtingwe
11699 Cambria Center Sheryl Liles
Sheree Palmer

11792 PS 94Q Peter Glus
11855 RMS @ I. S. 192 Eric Greene


Team# School Number Contact
1070 Manhattan East School for Academics and Art MS 224 Lliana Villegas
Elisabeth Castelli
Melissa Cancel
Yolanda Hernandez
Simon Lawrence
1087 Manhattan East School for Academics and Art MS 224 Liliana Villegas
Elisabeth Castelli
Melissa Cancel
Yolanda Hernandez
Simon Lawrence
2357 Dalton School Manhattan Robotics Samara Braunstein
2874 Anderson Middle School Carolyn Abbott
Judy Kunze
3029 The Chapin School Mr. Jack P. Cooley
3225 PS 123M Mahalia Jackson Scholars Academy John William King, Jr.
Levette Alexander
3305 PS126/MAT/ChinatownYMCA/Manhattan Academy of Technology Hau-Yu Chu
3307 Dalton Charles Forster
Annette Marcus
Chad Gallant
Rob Quatrone
3308 Dalton Rob Quatrone
Charles Forster
Annette Marcus
Chad Gallant
3516 Harlem Children's Zone
Promise Academy
Ms. Ify o. Anako
3631 Trevor Day School Steven Schechter
3714 Friend Seminary FSNYC Timothy Cooper
3916 Manhattan Youth @IS 289 M Stephen Husiak
Theseus Roche
Cecilia Dobbs
4006 Manhattan Youth @IS 289 M Stephen Husiak
Theseus Roche
Cecilia Dobbs
4007 Manhattan Youth @IS 289 M Theseus Roche
Cecilia Dobbs
4114 LREI Little Red School House Sherezada Acosta
4541 Hunter College Campus Mr. Peter H. Glus 718-423-8491
Christine Forkner
4687 Chelsea Prep Debbie Birstingl
Linore Lindy
5125 Chelsea Prep PS 33M Debbie Birstingl
Linore Lindy
5370 Manhattan Youth @IS 289 M Theseus Roche
Cecilia Dobbs
5798 Nest New Explorations into Science, Technology and Math Justin W. Mackey
5800 Nest New Explorations into Science, Technology and Math Justin W. Mackey

6770 The Children's Aid Society East Harlem Center Agustina Gonzalez
6807 The Chapin School Mr. Jack P. Cooley
6948 The School of the Future Extended Day Program -The Educational Alliance Ms. Cary Feliciano 
6963 The Childrens Aid Society Elieris Jimenez
Jorge T. Blau
7577 PS 28M Denise Tinsley
Aimee Peguero
7916 The Educational Alliance Boys & Girls Club @ PS 64M Anju J. Rupchandani

8233 Inwood Academy for Leadership David A. Boehm
8320 The Gateway School Eleni Liakaris
Ed Bringas
Jerry Pavlon-Blum
8426 Young Athletes, Inc. LaMarre Dyson
9264 Metropolitan Montessori School Lori J. Joachim
9278 Dutchman Charles C. Brainerd
9643 Beacon Scholastic Bibiana Thonmas
9668 The Brearley School Annie Cheung-Livhits
Luigi Cicala
9868 Suzanne M. Dwyer
9876 Nest New Explorations into Science, Technology and Math  Mr. Zachary E. Vine
10229 TAG Young Scholars Daniel R. McCormick
Bernice DeAbreu
10599 East Harlem Tutorial Gerardo G. Garcia
Javier Seda

10863 Mr. Thomas D. Currier 917 699 2802
11092 NYC Lab  Middle School Ms. Suzanne M. Dwyer 212 6916119
11113 Frederick Douglass Academy Megan Cardenas
11156 The Chapin School Mr. Jack P. Cooley
11157 The Chapin School Mr. Jack P. Cooley
11672 Grand Street Settlement Jasmin Sanchez
11793 HCHS FLL Robotics Team B Peter Glus
11915 University Settlement Beacon Program Monique Flores


Team# School Number Contact
225 PS/IS 123 X Chris Gooding
Joanne UrenaLaura Minsky
601 CS 66 X Christopher Blades
James Bellon
990 Pablo Casals MS 181x Terry Buchalter
1526 Pelham Academy Nicholas Covotsos
2342 MS 302 X Mr. Peter Armstrong
Sharon Shoatz
2497 PS 76X
The Bennington School
Russell Heath
3067 Archimedes Academy for Math, Science & Technology Justin Duffy
Miriam Lazar
3068 Archimedes Academy for Math, Science & Technology Dave Mclean
Miriam Lazar
3131 PS/MS 194 Christine Bernabei
Cynthia Khadaran
3532 East Fordham Academy for the Arts Alice D. Bajana-Vega
3533 East Fordham Academy for the Arts Alice D. Bajana-Vega
3990 IS 98 X Herman Ridder Harold Smith
4008 Bronx Prep. Charter School Derek Hernandez
Robert Thony
5062 Good Shepherd Services Oscar A. Lemus  
5119 St. Helena School  Mr. Richard C. Meller

5839Girl Scout Council of Greater NY, Inc. Lori Morea 
5840Girl Scout Council of Greater NY, Inc. Lori Morea 
6941 New York Junior Tennis League - MS 337 Lorna P. McBean
8395 PS 103 x Mr. Jarret P. Jackob
Linda Matos
Cathy Wilson Daily
Emily D’Erasmo
8398 PS 103 x Mr. Jarret P. Jackob
Linda Matos
Cathy Wilson Daily
Emily D’Erasmo
8838 IS 162 X Zoe V. Ornstein
8846 IS 162 X Zoe V. Ornstein
 Paul Anavian
9948 Bronx Latin MS Colleen A. Thomas
Mark Leffler
Cynthia Klebon, Katya Erlij,
10004 The Urban Institute of Mathematics Ryan McCabe
10384 PS 195X Zelma Torres-Rosado
10821 CS 134 X Edward Taveras
11043 PS 153 x Michelle Solomon
M Lee Hollman
11374 IS 318 X Quiya Scott
an Chow-Miller
11573 IS 131 X Robert Fishchetto
11683 IS 125 X
Henry Hudson
Carollynley Owens
Jover Nunez
Stacy Afflick
C. Owens


Team# School Number Contact
778 IS 75 SI Donny Swanson
Andrew Grandner
Denise Carsten
785 IS 75 SI Donny Swanson
Andrew Grandner
Denise Carsten
786 IS 75 SI Donny Swanson
Andrew Grandner
Denise Carsten
1014 IS 24 SI Raymond Cottrell
Jane Frangos
1015 IS 24 SI Raymond Cottrell
Jane Frangos
2394 IS 49 Francesco Portelos
2432 IS 49 SI Carol Obler
Francesco Portelos
2604 IS 24 SI/Wagner College Raymond Cottrell
Jane Frangos
2753 PS 57 SI Patricia Lockhart
3105 Eltingville Lutheran School Peter Hansen
3119 IS 27 SI Bryan Kilgallen
3120 IS 27 SI Bryan Kilgallen
3121 IS 27 SI Prall Bryan Kilgallen
3131 Petrides School Cindy A. Forkowitz
Carlos Rodriguez
3491 New World Prep Laura M. Martin
3903 St. Clare School Mary Lee
3904 St. Clare School Mary Lee
3905 St. Clare School Mary Lee
3906 St. Clare School Mary Lee
7032 St. John's Lutheran School Thomas J. Smolka
8148 Coen Patrick Coen
8873 NYC Parks Dept. Cromwell Center Anthony Traverso

Friday, November 19, 2010

Team in Spain Wants to Correspond

From: Adrian Gilbert <>
Date: Thu, Nov 18, 2010 at 1:01 PM
Subject: FLL

Dear mister or misses,
We’re a group from Spain. We are students which are going to participate in the First Lego League. We are from Figueres, a town in the north of Spain near the frontier with France. We participate in this project because we think that it’s a nice experience and it’s very interesting for prepare our future. Nearly all of us is going to do technological studies.

One month ago, our group of friends were talking and we noticed that there was a competition.

It mixes technological and scientific knowledge, the two things that we like. We took it like challenge. From this moment we started to work for became true this challenge.

We want to share information with you about the scientific project. We think that it’s good to exchange impressions with other people from foreign countries. We hope that you have the same opinion as us.

We’re looking forward to receive a letter from you.
Yours sincerely,


Saturday, November 06, 2010

Dean on your screen (again!)

On November 17, at 12 p.m. ET, Dean Kamen will join Sally Ride, Jamie Hyneman and Adam Savage of the hit science TV show "Mythbusters" and kids from around the world for “Math, Science and the Future of Our Nation,” a global online town hall from Time Warner Cable, as part of its Connect a Million Minds community initiative. 

Hosted by former Vice President Al Gore, this interactive event will connect young people in the U.S. to their peers abroad to discuss attitudes towards math and science, and what these attitudes mean for their future success. 

We encourage FLL team members and Mentors/Coaches to join this dynamic dialogue: Visit to learn about the many ways you can participate in this unprecedented international STEM event.


Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Attentional all Junior FIRST LEGO League Participants, Parents and Coaches!

The 2011 Expo for JrFLL, in March of 2011 at Jacob Javitz Convention Center, may be months away, but spots for the upcoming EXPO are filling up spot.
We have a limited number of openings available for teams planning on participating. 

Last season we welcomed 17 teams from all over the Tri-State area to Javits and enjoyed a tremendous success.

This season we have 20 spots available for the EXPO.  Seats are filling up fast! 

The  JrFLL EXPO is a non-competitive showcase of student work, including a show me poster or research project and a model designed to represent team exploration of the current theme, "Body Forward", All students receive recognition for their participation.

The cut off date for registration for the NYCNJ FIRST JrFLL Expo is December 15th, 2010, or until all 20 spots are filled!  

Any coaches or mentors who are interested in reserving a spot need to register a team with US FIRST via the JrFLL program link first.

Once you have received a team access pass and an official team number, e-mail: Keith Wynne at with your registration information.

I will get back to you in order to confirm a spot at the upcoming EXPO.

Thank you for your cooperation and continued support of FIRST Programming in New York City!

Sincerely Yours,

Keith A. Wynne

Elementary Science Specialist
P.S. The Carroll School
330 Smith Street
Brooklyn, N.Y. 11231
JrFLL Chairperson for the NYCNJ FIRST Planning Committee

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Teaching Stem with Robotics - Saturday, Oct. 30, 2010 - NYU/Poly

Registration closes Friday Oct 2 at midnight, Qualifying event fee, rules change, did you pay yet?, training

1. Registration closes Friday night at midnight. If you know of a school wanting to register tell them to do so ASAP.

2. Qualifying fees
Now that we are heading into preparing for qualifying events, we wan to remind veteran teams and inform new teams that there is a fee involved for each team in order to help make thees events as meaningful as possible for your students. Depending on the tournament these fees go towards covering costs of trophies, renting chairs and tables, tee-shirts for the judges and volunteers. (And food for them too.) Last year the fee was $30 and we are trying to keep it the same but are looking at the budgets.

There will be no fee for the Javits tournament in March.

If you are in Queens and Mike K hasn't contacted you about the Queens Google group email him:
3. A rule has changed since the kickoff
Scott Evans has deleted Ruling 3 and replaced it with the new, sparkly Ruling 10 on Robot Game Rulings. It goes a little something like this:

The LEGO manufactured “color” sensor, which is the only light-activated sensor in the retail Mindstorms NXT robot set, is now given the green light as an allowable sensor in the FLL robot game. Consider it added to the list in Rule 6. Testing has shown that this sensor is about equal in capability to the standard “light” sensor for robot game purposes, so you are allowed to use it as a color sensor or as a light sensor – it doesn’t matter. Only the LEGO manufactured sensors are allowed. Other brands such as HiTechnic brand are still not allowed.

4. If you haven't paid you have until Oct. 15. The longer you wait the longer it will take to get your Field Set up. That is a very important issue, particularly for rookie teams. You have to start getting the kids to build them in order to move forward. If you paid but haven't gotten your materials - contact Deanna Bishop at Pitsco. Email me if you have problems.

5. We have started working on a training session. Nothing set in stone yet but Oct. 16 is a target. You would have to being your robotic kit (not the Field Set up). No room for kids - coaches only. Email me if you have a special situation where you want to bring one child and I will see if it is possible. Check my blog for updates - upper right hand side panel.

917-992-3734 - but email is better

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Queens Registration Form is Ready

Hello all,

The link below will take you to the registration site for the Queens
Qualifying Tournament.  It is the only way to register for the Queens
tournament.  This year there appear to be many more teams in Queens.
There might possibly be more teams in Queens than slots at our
tournament.  This won't be clear until teams officially drop out.

If more teams register than there is room for, we will handle it in
this manner.  Organizations that register a single team will be given
priority.  That means that they will all get it.  Organizations with
multiple teams will be asked to make a choice.  Choice #1: Run a
tournament for your teams and participate with only a portion of your
teams.  Choice #2: Compete some of your teams in Queens and some
elsewhere (with Norm Scott's approval).  Choice #3: Compete all of
your teams elsewhere (with Norm Scott's approval).

To Norm, Mark and Rich:  Please forward this link to any new team that
is not part of the FLLQueens Google Group yet.

To all new teams:  You must become part of this google group.  In
order to do this you must email me:  In your
email please provide a call back number and the best time for me to
call you.  It is important that you have internet access when we
speak.  Alternatively you can call me at 718-361-2032 x1331.  I will
have internet but I can't guarantee I will be at my desk because I
teach two periods a day.

Good luck to all,

Mike Koumoullos
Queens Qualifying Tournament Coordinator

Thursday, September 09, 2010

NYCFIRST Lego League Kickoff

NOTE: The event will be begin at the Pfizer Auditorium which is located in the Dibner Library Building.

NYC FIRST Lego League Kickoff

Saturday September 25, 2010 at 10:00 AM-2:30 PM
Polytechnic Institute of NYU, Brooklyn, NY


10:00-10:10 AM: Welcome and Introductions (All Teams)
(Pfizer Auditorium)

10:10-10:45 AM: Body Forward Challenge Overview (All Teams)
(Pfizer Auditorium)

11:00-12:00 PM: Game Overview (All Teams)
(Rogers Hall [RH] - Room 116)

12:15-1:15 PM: Research Assignment Overview (Rookie Teams)
(Jacobs Academic Building - Room 475)

1:30-2:30 PM: Team Organization (Rookie Teams)
(Jacobs Academic Building - Room 475)

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

NYCFIRST UPDATE: Sept. 7, 2010 - the Challenge is live!

Welcome back to the new school year.

140 teams have registered so far. Registration will close at the end of the month or when all Field Set Up Kits run out. YOU MUST ORDER AT LEAST ONE FSK TO PRACTICE BUT IF YOU HAVE MORE THAN ONE TEAM YOU DO NOT NEED AN FSK FOR EACH.


KICKOFF Sat. SEPT. 25 at NYU/Polytech - Jay St.- 6 Metrotech
Starts 9am and runs till around 1.
See the Challenge set up for you to ask questions.
Experience coaches to give you tips.
Check the blog side panel for updates.

You can bring kids. You don't have to pre-register but for planning purposes email me if you are coming with a rough number of how many people.

That same weekend is the World  Maker Faire and you are invited to bring your team, either after the kickoff or the next day.

Please fill out this form if you're interested:
or email

Click link for details.

Experienced Coach Veryl Greene Help Links (click here)

Contact Veryl Greene ( with questions about the robot,
performance, technical; 

This came on from FIRST:

Check out our video of Scott showing the game to Yoky Matsuoka, which you can also show at your tournaments.

1.       Robot SetsA quick note from Jr.FLL and FLL Product Development Manager Amy Mitchell-Hartson: The FLL robot set is currently on back order for U.S. orders.  The recent shipment was held up by customs, and is not expected to be released until September 13th.  I recognize that this is bad timing, but unfortunately there is nothing that we can do to have customs release them at a faster rate (unless one of you know someone uber special).  If teams contact you regarding their robot set order, please let them know that we will process all orders ASAP.

Please encourage teams to start the project and build the Field Setup for now to keep the season moving. Speaking of the Field Setup…

2.       Rookies and FSKs:  Approximately 23% of registered teams for the 2010 FLL Body Forward season are rookie teams.  One thing that the rookie teams may not be aware of is that they need to have access to a Field Setup Kit (FSK).  In your email blasts to teams, if you could please remind teams that they need access to a FSK and that the ordering period ends in a few weeks, we would be very much appreciative.

Here are some links from the norms robotics blog side panel:

Contact Norm
Click below to see a list of all registered teams so far for the 2010/11 season (As of Sept 1.)

Schedule for 2010/11 Season



SAT. JAN. 8, 2011 -9-4





Sunday, September 05, 2010

Veryl Greene Help Links

Contact Veryl Greene ( with questions about the robot,
performance, technical; 
I even may be able to visit a few rookie teams
(that are not too out-of-way). Also, on my blog I will be giving tips &
posting useful links to FLL teams in preparation. 

I've put together & have been using with new coaches "A FIRST LEGO
League Challenge Guide to Success" (see attachment) look it over to see
if this might be helpful & may be we can make if available to coaches.I
know most of this info can be found somewhere on the website, but this
is just a quick reference & reminder guide.

Ms. Veryl Greene
Robotics Consultant 

A FIRST LEGO League Challenge Guide to Success
(For Rookie coaches & even Veterans)
V. “LeGo-Bots Lady” Greene
Overview: What to Keep in Mind
         It’s about the learning process & having fun!
         Don’t stress about learning the programming – There are good tutorials:
Kelly, James Floyd. LEGO Mindstorms NXT-G Programming Guide. 2nd Ed. Berkley, CA: Apress, 2010.
Kelly, James & Daudelin, Jonathan. FIRST LEGO League: The Unofficial Guide. San Francisco, CA: No Starch Press, 2008.
Emphasize the importance of the commitment by team members & their parents; making the practices & being available for the Qualifier Tournament & the Finals. Send a letter home about practice/tournament dates & times, for the team member & their parents to sign. Also, send reminders home of upcoming events. Solicit the help of parents & colleagues at practices and/or tournaments (and be sure to express your appreciation for their support).
Let the kids become the experts! Remember this is a kid project; you are
there for support & guidance – encourage & ask thought provoking questions to help them come up with their own solutions to the challenges.
Getting Started
Explanation of what the competition is about and the various awards.
Viewing of the FIRST Compilation DVD & General Guide to the FLL
What is this year’s theme?
What’s in the kit?
Learning & identifying the parts of the kit. Setting up some sort of
organization of the parts.
Field Set Up
         What is this year’s challenge? View the robot challenge/game on the internet.
         Group team members in pairs & assign field set up building.
         Team discussion/brainstorming of ideas of how the tasks on the field can be
accomplished (someone can take notes).
Print out copies of the Rules from the website & Rubrics from the Coach’s
         If you are building the tabletop (not absolutely necessary but nice if you
                  can), the Table Construction specifications are below.
Research Project
         Print out the Research Project topic from the Internet.
         Have all members of the team do some initial research on the topic and share
what information they found & resources.
         Team discussion/brainstorming of ideas of what the team would like to do
for their project.
         Consult the experts on the topic – Internet, agencies, etc.
         Identify which team members are going to be responsible for the project &
                  Presentation. However, any member of the team should be able to
                  have input.
         Give your research presentation pizzazz!
Robot Challenge
If possible, have more than one NXT robotics kit – one-per/3-4 kids.
Design different models.
Be aware of the Parts Rules, see below.
Introduce the use of sensors, simple programming for the sensors, & motors.
Have the team discuss & design robots specifically for the challenge.
An easy & free download LEGO Digital Designer is available @ for designing robots & attachments.
Then have the team decide on the best robot to accomplish the
missions & make a duplicate.
Discussion of the missions on the field:
                  What needs to be accomplished?
                  What attachments or sensors are needed?
                  What missions can be combined together?
Have the students work in pairs or threes, with each group being
responsible for a mission or group of missions.
Identify specialties, who are the main robot designers, builders, 
programmers, & handlers (the members who will go to the tables at
the tournament) are, although all should be able to have input in any
         The handlers work in pairs: one controls the robot and the other is the
“spotter” who helps put on attachments & removes objects in base out of the way. The team can have 1-4 pairs of handlers for the different rounds. Usually, there are 4 rounds. The highest score of all the rounds is used to determine place.
Technical/Robot Design
         Identify the two members who will present the robot to the judges for
                  the Robot Design Award. They will have to demonstrate the robot,
                  explain the attachments & use of sensors, as well as, programming.
                  (Printouts of programming would be useful)
Teamwork Award
         The team will have to explain to the judges how they worked together to
                  tackle the challenge.
         Ideas: Develop a website and/or blog for the team. (Research Project
members could be responsible for it).
Team Spirit Award
         Team T-shirts, caps, costumes, etc. Signs. Bookmarks & flyers about your
Research Project.
         Cheering squad - Have students, teachers, parents come to the tournaments.
Champion’s Award
         Robot Design 25%, Robot Performance 25%, Project Presentation 25%,
Teamwork 25%
Consent Forms
         Each member attending each tournament must bring a FIRST Consent Form.
This will be available online to download.
Team Information Form
         Fill out one form per team & bring it to the tournament. This will be
available online to download.
Stay informed! Check weekly:
         Game Clarifications & Rule Update webpage – - Calendar, Challenge & tournament info. - Calendar, Challenge building &
programming tips.
Practice, Practice, Practice
3 Weeks before the Qualifier - Pretend to be at the tournament – go through
what will be done: Robot Performance 2 ½ minutes. Robot Design 5-10 minutes; Research Project 10 minutes; Judges’ interview of the team for Teamwork Award.
V-Day – Qualifier & Finals
         Bring consent forms, a kit for repairs & enhancements, robot(s) (if you have
more than one kit, build & program two identical robots in case something happens to one & you don’t have time for major repairs), robot charger, Research Project materials, laptop & charger, power strip, extension cord.
                  Lunch, snacks, and/or money for food.
The Robot Game takes place on a specially designed table, so you’ll need to build one to practice on if you don’t already have access to one.  With safety, weight, height, and cost in mind, a simple design is offered here, but as long as your surface is smooth, and your border walls are located properly, how you build the understructure is up to you.  The construction is simple, but does require some wood-working skills.
At a tournament, two tables are placed back to back, but you only operate on one table, so you only need to build one table to practice on.  Since a tournament setup has a double wall at the interactive area where the two tables meet, practice tables need an extra wall of type B on the corresponding side.  So here are the instructions for building one “half-table” including a double north wall:
Field Setup Kit (mission model LEGO elements, mat, CD, Dual Lock)
sanded plywood (or other very smooth board) 96” X 48” X 3/8” or thicker
two-by-four, 8’ (actual cross-section = 1-1/2” by 3-1/2”)
two-by-three, 8’ (actual cross-section = 1-1/2” by 2-1/2”)
flat black paint
1 pt. or spray can
coarse drywall screws, 6 X 2-1/2”
1/2 lb.
saw horses, about 24” high and 36” wide
Make From
table surface (A)
96” X 48”
long border wall (B)
short border wall (C)
stiffener (D)
saw horse
H » 24”  W » 36”
Step 1 - Determine which face of the plywood (A) is least smooth, and consider that the bottom face.  On the bottom face, locate, clamp, and screw on the stiffeners (D) (about every 18 inches).  Be sure screw head tops are flush.  Sand any splinters. 
Step 2 - On the top face of the plywood, locate, clamp, and screw on the border walls (B,C) around the top perimeter.  The wall-to-wall dimensions must measure 93±1/8” by 45±1/8” (2362±3mm by 1143±3mm).
Step 3 - With the help of another person, place this table top on short saw horses (or milk crates, or anything else short and solid).
Parts Rules
This rule is not only about the robot.  It also covers all of the attachments and strategic objects you bring to the competition area…
  • Everything you compete with must be made of LEGO elements in original factory condition, except LEGO string and tubing, which you may cut to length.  Exception: You can reference a paper list to keep track of programs.
  • There are no restrictions on the quantities or sources of non-electric LEGO elements, except that factory-made wind-up/pull-back “motors” are not allowed.  Pneumatics are allowed.
  • The electric elements used must be the LEGO MINDSTORMS type, and the total number of electric elements you may use in one match is limited as follows:
For RCX users:      
 For NXT users:
RCX controller (1) 
NXT controller (1)
motors (3)  
motors (3)
touch sensors (2) 
touch sensors (2)
light sensors (2)     
light sensors (2)
lamp (1)      
lamp (1)      
rotation sensors (3)    
rotation sensors (3 minus the number of NXT motors present)
3rd touch OR light sensor (1)    
ultrasonic sensor (1)
  • Example 1:  If your robot has three motors, you may not have any other motor in the competition area, even if it’s only for weight or decoration; even if it’s in a box, off the field.
  • Example 2:  If your robot has two motors, but you have multiple attachments to motorize, you must design a way to switch the 3rd motor from one attachment to the next.
  • LEGO wires and converter cables are allowed as needed.
  • Spare/alternate electrical parts are allowed in the pit area.
  • Computers are not allowed in the competition area.
  • Objects functioning as remote controls are not allowed anywhere.
  • Marker may be used for owner identification in hidden areas only.
  • Paint, tape, glue, oil, etc. are not allowed.
  • Stickers are not allowed except LEGO stickers applied per LEGO instructions.
  • You are not allowed to use more than one robot in a single match, but it’s okay to use a different robot in a different match.
  • If a robot is in violation - of this rule or the SOFTWARE rule - and cannot be corrected, the decision about exactly what to do rests with the head officials at the tournament, but that robot may not win awards.