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First Lego League in Virginia and DC


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Michael Blanpied <[log in to unmask]>
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Michael Blanpied <[log in to unmask]>
Fri, 30 Oct 2009 15:12:49 -0400
text/plain (6 kB) , text/html (7 kB)
Exactly because the research presentations are behind closed doors, a 
lot of the ARE video taped, and many do end up on YouTube. So 
previous advice is correct: there are a wide variety of presentations 
to be found, and those illustrate a wide variety of styles, 
strategies, maturities and all the rest. It's an excellent plan to 
take some time in the off-season to review Youtube videos of both 
research presentations and robots solving missions, and have some 
guided conversation about the strategies, rubrics, what worked and 
didn't, etc.

Bravo, Brian, for taking your raw team to the tournament. They'll learn a ton!!


>I would like to add 2 thoughts, Phil.
>An "audience" is never allowed for judging. Coaches and historians 
>(camera person) are the only ones allowed into the judging rooms 
>with teams.
>And, there is no way to know that a group will be successful before 
>they present.
>Darlene Pantaleo
>Judge Advisor
>Maggie Walker
>On Oct 30, 2009, at 1:51 PM, Phil Smith III wrote:
>>This is a GREAT post. I'm thrilled that you "get it", and I'm sure 
>>your team will have a great time at your Regional!
>>The bad news: there likely won't be an opportunity to see a 
>>Research presentation. Due to noise, space, etc., this just isn't 
>>usually practical (consider how your team would do if some other 
>>team were there, making faces at them...).
>>HOWEVER, there are a number of past presentations on YouTube; 
>>suggest you look there. "FLL" is a good keyword.
>>Phil Smith III
>>Virginia State Judge Advisor, 2007, 2008, 2009
>>Judge Advisor, Northern Virginia Regional tournaments, 2007, 2008, 2009
>>Division 1 Judge Advisor, Virginia State tournament, 2006
>>Coach, The Capital Girls, Oak Hill (retired)
>>Team 1900 (2002)
>>Team 2497 (2003)
>>Team 2355 (2004)
>>Team 1945 (2005)
>>-----Original Message-----
>>From: First Lego League in Virginia and DC 
>>[mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Brian Nussbaum
>>Sent: Friday, October 30, 2009 1:08 PM
>>To: <mailto:[log in to unmask]>[log in to unmask]
>>Subject: [VADCFLL-L] It's all about the process....
>>Hello VDACFLL,
>>(My thoughts with a question at the end)
>>I am a first-year coach with a very young team of 5th graders.  Earlier in
>>this listserv there was some conversation about coaches who do not feel that
>>they are ready for the competition.
>>We have a week until our day at JMU, and I can definitely say that ateam and
>>bteam from Thomas Harrison Middle School will be bringing up the rear.  It
>>will be quite amazing if our group is able to complete one task on the
>>table, and have any sort of powerpoint with a linear thought process.  We
>>have not completed any of the requirements on the rubric for our research.
>>HOWEVER, as coaches we are looking at the process rather than the end
>>result. Learning has happened on the part of both the students and the
>>coaches (for example, some of our students are learning that it is not a
>>good idea to completely dismantle the robot a week before the competition).
>>On the whole, it is a good example of how this particular group of 5th
>>graders has some significant growing to do in the thought-process and
>>maturity departments.
>>As coaches, we have done significant scaffolding for them to try to break
>>down the problem into smaller chunks, but we will just call our students
>>'creative thinkers' rather than linear or result-oriented thinkers.
>>But this is OK, because we have made progress, even though very little of it
>>will appear on Saturday.  We are trusting that this will be a learning
>>experience for this very young team.  At this point they don't even realize
>>what they don't know.  Seeing other teams will be a good opportunity for
>>them to realize their potential for the future.
>>If we work together a few times in the spring to go back and solve a few of
>>this year's tasks, and then get an earlier start next fall, we may be more
>>in the middle of the pack next year (I'm thinking optimistically).
>>This is to assure all of you that are feeling worried--it's OK.
>>Question:  will there be an opportunity for my teams to watch other groups'
>>research presentations?  I think they never really got a full understanding
>>of what we were going for on the research end of things.  Seeing a
>>successful group could be helpful for them.
>>Mr. Brian Nussbaum
>>Mathematics Teacher
>>Thomas Harrison Middle School
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