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Robotics at the Middle School

Garden City Middle School First Lego League (FLL)

The FIRST LEGO League (also known by the acronym FLL) is an international competition organized by FIRST for elementary and middle school students In September each year, a new challenge is announced that focuses on a different real-world topic related to the sciences. Each challenge within the competition then revolves around that theme. The robotics part of the competition revolves around designing and programming Lego Robots to complete tasks. The students work out solutions to the various problems they are given and then meet for regional tournaments to share their knowledge, compare ideas, and display their robots. FIRST Lego League is a partnership between FIRST and the Lego Group.

The goal of FLL is to get children excited about science and technology -- and teach them valuable employment and life skills. Teams are composed of up to ten children with at least one adult coach. In FLL, the children do the work! And the work is programming an autonomous robot (using the LEGO® MINDSTORMS® robot set) to score points on a thematic playing surface, creating an innovative solution to a problem as part of their project, all while being guided by the FLL Core Values. These three elements - the Robot Game, Project, and FLL Core Values - make up what we call our yearly Challenge. Like any other organized “sport”, teams also fundraise, create a team identity, and go on field trips.

The FLL Core Values are the cornerstones of the FLL program. They are among the fundamental elements that distinguish FLL from other programs of its kind. By embracing the Core Values, participants learn that friendly competition and mutual gain are not separate goals, and that helping one another is the foundation of teamwork.

  • We are a team.

  • We do the work to find solutions with guidance from our coaches and mentors.

  • We know our coaches and mentors don't have all the answers; we learn together.

  • We honor the spirit of friendly competition.

  • What we discover is more important than what we win.

  • We share our experiences with others.

  • We display Gracious Professionalism® and Coopertition® in everything we do.

  • We have FUN!

The GCMS FLL will have two teams, of 10 students, capping the program at 20 students.  Due to the rigors of the program, building and programming the robot, the design challenge, and  project presentation at the local qualifying event, attendance is everything.  We will be meeting at least twice a week, Mondays and Wednesdays from 3:30 to 5:30 in room 145 at the Middle School.  There are also several other tentative dates that attendance is mandatory, Practice Tournament December 7th 2013, Qualifiers Feb 1st and 2nd 2014 (Central Islip), and March 2 2014 (Middle Island).  These dates and locations may change.

If you would like to more about the FLL you can go to their site at

Thanks and we look forward to a great season with your student!