FLL
FLL Information Night

The LigerBots will be hosting its annual FIRST® LEGO® League (FLL) information night online on August 24, 2020, at 8 PM. If you would like to attend — or cannot attend but are interested — please fill out this form. For more background, you can view this short video and read about FIRST’s mission statement, this year’s FLL challenge and season info, the FLL season calendar, FIRST’s response to COVID-19, and FIRST’s guide for remote events. You can also email [email protected] for more information.

FIRST® LEGO® League (FLL) Newton Qualifier and
Eastern MA State Championship

The LigerBots hosted the 2019 Newton Qualifier, a FIRST LEGO League robotics competition for elementary and middle schoolers, at Newton North High School on Saturday, November 23, 2019, and the Eastern MA State Championship, on Saturday, December 14. More than 1000 students, family members, coaches, judges and members of the public attended the two events. 34 teams of Massachusetts students in grades 4-8 competed in the Newton Qualifier and 48 teams in the Eastern MA State Championship. Students compete using LEGO robots they designed, built, and programmed to perform complex tasks. Also open to public view were the displays of student solutions to real-world problems related to the city theme for last year's game, which was called "City Shaper." Information on the game can be found here and a video is here. You can also find 100s of photos from the 2 events on the LigerBots Flickr site.

Alongside the competitions, the LigerBots held maker fairs with hands-on activities for kids in the fields of science, technology, engineering, art, and math. An article about a past competition and maker fair from the Newton Tab can be found here. The competitions also featured an exhibit of some top local FIRST Robotics Competition and FIRST Tech Challenge robots.

About FIRST® LEGO® League

FLL immerses teams of up to 10 students, ages 9 – 14 (grades 4 – 8), in real-world scientific and technological problems such as food safety or recycling. Teams research and design solutions to a scientific question or problem and build autonomous LEGO robots that compete in performing assigned missions. Experience in FIRST® LEGO® League prepares students well for high-school-level robotics with the LigerBots. FLL Jr. is a LEGO project-based program for kids ages 6 – 9 (grades K – 3).

The FLL competition consists of a robot game and a team project. The robot game is played on a 4'x8' field and has LEGO challenges (like moving a ball or flipping a switch). The project is to identify a real world problem (within the guidelines provided by FIRST), propose a solution, and present it to the judges.

The LigerBots do not currently directly run elementary or middle school programs, but we are committed to doing what we can to support such programs. To start with, we are setting ourselves up as an information clearinghouse. We will also support coaches with figuring out how to get going.

  • Teams come and go, but a few legacy teams have openings. New teams are typically formed by 2 – 3 parents interested in providing this experience for their kids. Teams can have up to 10 members.
  • You do not have to be an engineer or scientist to coach a team! The challenge is designed to be solved by 9 – 14 year-old kids. There are many resources available on the web, and other coaches (and the LigerBots!) will also help.
  • The main requirement for forming a team is to have space for a 4'x8' game table. Teams typically meet 1 – 2 times per week for 2 – 3 hours, and the season is approximately 10 weeks long. The cost is $500 – $1,000 for the entire team (you can either divide the cost by the number of participants or apply for grants). Of course, if you want to spend more money, you can, but do not need to.

For more information on how to start a team, you can visit the FIRST® website here and if you already know that you would like to participate in FLL, please fill out the survey here.