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Engineering | Fulton Engineering Education Outreach

FIRST® LEGO® League Challenge

I especially love that while robot performance is important, there are other aspects that are valued as much or more. Most places in our culture today define winning and success very narrowly, and I appreciate immensely that the program has different values. The girls have had a blast, and this is now as important as dance class in our house.”

Jennifer Robinson

Parent and FIRST LEGO League Coach

About the Program

Friendly competition is at the heart of Challenge, as teams of students ages 9-16 engage in research, problem-solving, coding, and engineering – building and programming a LEGO® Education SPIKE™ Prime or LEGO® MINDSTORMS® robot that navigates the missions of a robot game. As part of Challenge, teams also participate in a research project to identify and solve a relevant real-world problem.

There are three essential parts to Challenge: core values, the robot game, and innovation project.

Core Values

  • Apply TEAMWORK and DISCOVERY to explore the challenge.
  • INNOVATE with new ideas about your robot and project.
  • Show how your team and your solutions will have an IMPACT and be INCLUSIVE!
  • Celebrate by having FUN in everything you do!

Robot Game

  • Design and build your robot.
  • Program it to solve Robot Game missions.
  • Design any attachments your robot will need tocomplete the missions.
  • Explain how your robot will act based on the code you wrote.
  • Describe your strategies for the Robot Game

Innovation Project

  • Identify a problem to solve.
  • Design a solution to the problem for your  ommunity.
  • Share your ideas, learn from others, and improve your solution.
  • Pitch your solution.
  • Prepare a 5-minute presentation to explain your Innovation Project.

About the Season

The three videos below outline what you need to know for getting your team started, working with your students on the robot game, and finally what to expect at the tournament. For more specific details on the season, check out the FIRST LEGO League Challenge navigation links on the left.

Getting Started

See the steps below on how to get started with your team this season! This year’s theme is centered around exploring the activities we can do in different spaces for play and how we can ensure that our games and activities are fun and accessible for everyone involved. Our FIRST Core Values will explain HOW we do everything and help them learn what fun it is sharing and working with other people.

Check the following items off as your team receives them:

  • Challenge Set
  • Engineering Notebooks
  • Team Meeting Guide
  • Robot Game Rulebooks

Be sure to read these documents carefully and check out the “What Does My Team Need?” section in the Team Meeting Guide. You will also need computers or devices with the SPIKE Prime app or MINDSTORMS program installed. These can be found on LEGO Education’s website.

All of the information about the Challenge, including rulebook updates throughout the season, and mission setup instructions can be found here posted by FIRST. If you have the time and resources, your team could also invest in building a wooden table used in competitions. Instructions for this can be found on the FIRST website under “table building instructions.”

If your team is participating in the class pack option, check out the digital class pack tournament guide which was sent to you during registration with FIRST.

If your team plans on participating in a regional competition, please see our list of local events under FIRST LEGO League Challenge. In-person competitions are hosted in Northern Arizona, the Phoenix metropolitan area, and Southern Arizona, so be sure to find an option for which event works with your schedule. Remote competitions can be attended from anywhere.

Good luck and have fun! You can find additional resources about each area of the competition under the FIRST LEGO League Challenge menu on the left: robot game, robot judging, core values, and innovation project.