Good Afternoon Jr.FLL Teams,
Unfortunately blogging has gotten away from me for the last few weeks but hopefully now that our season is well underway I will be able to connect with you more.
I am happy to report we have almost 1,000 registered Jr.FLL teams in the third week of October. That’s incredible and it’s all thanks to you!! Our goal this year is to have 1,500 Jr.FLL teams registered by June 30, 2009. We hope that you are having a good time this year with your Smart Move Challenge and you will tell other people how great your Jr.FLL experience is. Can you help us get to 1,500 teams by June. I sure hope so!!! The Jr.FLL Program is meant to be facilitated on the community level so we need your help spreading the word!!!
Many of you have asked about the products that we are offering for Jr.FLL that are sold through LEGO Education. There is no mandatory product that you must buy to be a part of Jr.FLL however the products that we have suggested will certainly help you build the LEGO model that is part of the Jr.FLL Challenge. The LEGO model must be made entirely of LEGO elements and include at least one moving part and one simple machine. The model must not be bigger than the surface area of a 15″ by 15″ square. Some teams choose to buy a LEGO base plate that is this exact size so that they can build their model on the base plate and then transport it easily to events. The LEGO base plate is an optional item.
The difference between the Jr.FLL Base kit that is suggested and the LEGO WeDo set is the simple ability for your team to expereince the early stages of programming using a computer. The WeDo set is the beginning robotics kit sold buy LEGO education. This kit will allow your team to build various models and program them to move using software loaded onto a computer. If you choose to use this kit you will need to keep in mind that you will have to bring a computer to an event and attach it to your model in order to make your model move. The Jr.FLL Base kit that we are recommending is a basic simple motorized mechanism set that comes with pieces that will allow your team to build a model and use a motor to make a part of the model move. Many teams buy extra sets of LEGO Bricks to build a more robust model but this is also not necessary. It is really up to the Coach and the team to decide on how elaborate to make your Jr.FLL Smart Move Model. I hope this clarifys the product element of Jr.FLL a little more. I wish you lot’s of luck making a Smart Move!