FAQ
FIRST® LEGO® LEAGUE

Team QUESTIONS

What are the FIRST® LEGO® League Core Values?

We express the FIRST® philosophies of Gracious Professionalism and Coopertition through our Core Values:
FLL, Core Values We express the FIRST® philosophies of Gracious Professionalism and Coopertition through our Core Values:

  • Discovery: We explore new skills and ideas.
  • Innovation: We use creativity and persistence to solve problems.
  • Impact: We apply what we learn to improve our world.
  • Inclusion: We respect each other and embrace our differences.
  • Teamwork: We are stronger when we work together.
  • Fun: We enjoy and celebrate what we do!

What is the FIRST® LEGO® League Challenge?

Each year, FIRST® LEGO® League releases a Challenge, which is based on a real-world scientific topic.

Each Challenge has three parts: the Robot Game, the Project, and the Core Values. Teams of up to ten youth, with at least two adult coaches, participate in the Challenge by programming an autonomous robot to score points on a themed playing field (Robot Game), developing a solution to a problem they have identified (Project), all guided by the FIRST® Core Values. Teams may then attend an official tournament, hosted by our FIRST® LEGO® League Partners.

Past Challenges have been based on topics such as nanotechnology, climate, quality of life for the handicapped population, and transportation. By designing our Challenges around such topics, participants are exposed to potential career paths within a chosen Challenge topic, in addition to solidifying the STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) principles that naturally come from participating in the program. Team members also learn valuable life and employment skills, which will benefit them no matter the career path they choose.

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Does FIRST® LEGO® League have an official policy on how teams advance to Championships from Qualifiers?

In accordance with the Participation Rules, teams are eligible for awards and advancement only at the first official event of each qualifying level attended during season. In most cases, event capacity within a region limits team participation to only one qualifying event each season.

The qualifier advancement policy is based on Champion’s Award criteria. As described above, Champion’s Award criteria require that the team, performs well in all three judged areas (Core Values, Project, and Robot Design). Teams are required to be ranked in the in the top 40% of official Robot Game scores to be considered for Champion’s Award and they must be ranked in the top 75% of official Robot Game scores to be eligible to advance.

Contact your local Partner or Tournament Director to find out how many teams will be advancing from the event you are attending. (See the official Advancement Policy).

It is possible for a team to receive a 1st Place Core Values, Project, or Robot Design Award but not advance to Championship if their Robot Performance score is ranked below the top 75% of teams at the event. A team may win 1st Place in Robot Performance but not advance to Championship due to not having performed well in one or more of the three judged areas.

What are the rules for participating in a FIRST® LEGO® League tournament?

Like other team activities, FIRST® LEGO® League has basic ground rules. Failure to abide by these rules could result in ineligibility for awards at a tournament or other consequences deemed necessary by judges, referees, tournament organizers, FIRST® LEGO® League partners, Headquarters, or their designated representatives.

General Rules
Teams, coaches and other supporters must demonstrate the Core Values in their actions and
activities.

Throughout the season, teams need access to the following materials:

  • LEGO® MINDSTORMS® Robot Set
  • Computer or tablet with software to program the robot. (Laptop is recommended.)

Throughout the season, teams need access to the following season-specific materials:

  • Challenge Set
  • Documents from www.firstlegoleague.org/challenge all released at 1 pm EST August 1st of the Challenge season year:
    • Mission Model Build Instructions
    • Field Setup Guide
    • Challenge and Challenge Guide

Competition Rules
A competitive team is one playing in a FIRST® LEGO® League official event. These additional rules apply:

  • A competitive team consists of a minimum of two and a maximum of 10 youth. Proper adult supervision is required as described in the FIRST® Youth Protection Policy.
  • A team must be registered and fully paid in the national registration system to sign up for official events. Additional event fees may apply.
  • Team members are between the minimum and maximum age allowed in their region.
  • All work presented at an official event is the work of the youth on the team.
  • All team members attending an event are required to participate in all three judging sessions and be present as a team at the Robot Game matches.

Awards/Advancement
A competitive team must meet these additional criteria to be eligible for awards and/or advancement at an official event.

  • Teams are at their first official event of each tournament level for the season. For example, teams are only eligible for awards at the first qualifier they compete in each season. [See INTO ORBIT Challenge Guide]
  • Team members’ work must conform to the parameters and rules outlined in the Challenge and Challenge Guide. [See INTO ORBIT Challenge, Updates, & Resources]

Consequences
FIRST® Washington gives authority to volunteers staffing FIRST® LEGO® League official events to interpret and implement the participation rules, guided by global FIRST® LEGO® League training materials.

  • Teams, coaches, and supporters at official events are expected to demonstrate FIRST® Core Values.
  • Individuals interfering with, excessively instructing, prompting, or heckling a team or volunteer may be asked to leave.
  • Severe infractions of these rules may result in a team’s dismissal from the event. FIRST® LEGO® League official event volunteers are provided training to identify and respond to these situations [See FIRST Youth Protection Policy (YPP)].
  • Individuals and/or teams who fail to abide by the participation rules may be ineligible for awards at a tournament.

How old does my child need to be to join a FIRST® LEGO® League team?

The FIRST® LEGO® League program is designed for young people ages 9-14 years old in grades 4-8.

What are the minimum requirements for every FIRST® LEGO® League team?

Each FIRST® LEGO® League team needs:

  • Two or more adult coaches willing and motivated to guide the team through the discovery and competition season (and beyond) – no special technical experience is required
  • Up to 10 students ages 9 to 14 willing to put in time and do any job the team needs to succeed (There are lots of important jobs available for all skill levels and interests.)
  • A suitable meeting place, either public or private, that can accommodate a 4 x 8-foot playing field table, and has internet access
  • A standard Challenge Set and a common set of rules issued by FIRST® and LEGO®
  • A paid team registration, official team number, and a LEGO® MINDSTORMS® robot set
  • The desire to learn, explore, strategize, build comradery, share ideas and talents, make new friends, be accepted, and HAVE FUN!

When does FIRST® LEGO® League happen?

Teams generally form and register from May through October.

The FIRST® LEGO® League season Challenge information is released in late August. The project and build season begins after the Challenge is released.

Tournaments begin at the end of November. Tournaments – Qualifier Competitions – determine which teams earn spots at the FIRST® Championship at the end of April

There are also many off-season events in which teams can participate, strategize, hone their skills, learn new technology, meet other teams, and have fun.

 

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