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November 2008

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Sender:
First Lego League Discussion <[log in to unmask]>
Date:
Mon, 24 Nov 2008 09:42:05 -0500
Reply-To:
Sonya Shaver <[log in to unmask]>
Subject:
From:
Sonya Shaver <[log in to unmask]>
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To: "Carolyn A. Fortner-Burton" <[log in to unmask]> cc: [log in to unmask]
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I want to chime in that I like the fact that the scores are not posted.
They are very subjective, and so a score, in my opinion, does not
necessarily reflect how well a team did in their own minds.  Maybe they did
really well in terms of what they were capable of, but received a score
relatively low compared to other teams.  You know what I mean?  I like that
the kids can evaluate themselves how thye feel they did.

I understand what you say about how knowing scores might help kids know
better for next year, but if you posted scores based on that, you would be
implying that winning is the goal, which has been clearly stated by FIRST
that it is not.

Plus, just because you know your score, that you were second, or 16th, I
don't think that really helps you know why.  Why were you 2nd?  What did the
team that was 1st do that gave them that standing?  We won't know those
things.  If you get an "F" on a paper, you would like the teacher to make
comments and suggestions throughout the paper to know why they thought the
paper deserved an "F".  But you'd also feel pretty bad about the F, so
it would be nicer to just get the comments.

I think the best way to help teams know is to have good feedback forms.  I
know the judges have a limited amount of time, but I would have liked more
feedback on what we could have done better.  We had some feedback forms, but
we just had a few things checked off that were suggested as strengths, and I
would have liked to know more.  I love the idea of having the rubrics used
on the feedback forms, as that is what we used to prepare our kids, but I
found a lot of those things weren't asked in the sessions.  Maybe next year
they can make a statewide form for all the regional tournaments to use.
That way people could collaborate on what worked well, and share ideas on
how to have an efficient and helpful feedback form.

Sonya

On Mon, Nov 24, 2008 at 8:24 AM, Carolyn A. Fortner-Burton <
[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> At the Midlothian H.S. tournament I received a folder with our teams
> evaluation.  I'm using the feedback to help the kids figure out how they
> can
> improve next year, Carolyn
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: First Lego League Discussion [mailto:[log in to unmask]]
> On
>  Behalf Of [log in to unmask]
> Sent: Sunday, November 23, 2008 11:46 PM
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Subject: Re: [VADCFLL-L] Tournament Scoring
>
> All of this I understand.  However, with absolutely no feedback on the
> three non-table aspects of FIRST, how is a team to have any idea how they
> performed?  I am not advocating posting of scores in those areas, but the
> effectiveness of any test or competition is to have information whereby you
> can measure yourself.
>
> As it stands now, having experienced two Regionals and one State
> competition, our team is clueless as to how the judges evaluated our other
> three presentations.  A simple check sheet based on the Rubics (without a
> numerical score) would be most helpful.
>
> Larry Sides
> Madison Menagerie Robotics
>
> Original Message:
> -----------------
> From: Eric Palmer [log in to unmask]
> Date: Sat, 22 Nov 2008 17:02:31 -0500
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Subject: Re: [VADCFLL-L] Tournament Scoring
>
>
> I too want to second what Kevin and Cynthia has said.  As a judge, the
> rubrics are important but we may end up with teams with identical scores
> and
> then it becomes a matter of what stands out and how much.
>
> I like to FIRST rules about no more than one award + robot performance.
> This creates the possibilities for more teams to get awards which can exit
> them and motivate them.  And the teams that don't can see that with just a
> little more work or unity they too can get an award.
>
>
>
> Eric F. Palmer
> Judge, former coach and soon to be coach again (yea!)
>
>
> [log in to unmask]
> http://VitalJourney.org <http://vitaljourney.org/> - Blog
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: First Lego League Discussion [mailto:[log in to unmask]]
> On
> Behalf Of Cynthia
> Sent: Saturday, November 22, 2008 4:44 PM
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Subject: Re: [VADCFLL-L] Tournament Scoring
>
> I'd just like to second what Kevin said about the judging scores. While
> attempts have been made to make judging objective by implementing rubrics
> and numerical scores, presentation, teamwork, and robot design remain
> subjectively scored. It's all about impressing the judges enough that your
> team stands out in our minds at the end of the day. The scores help us weed
> out the very best teams, but many times, several teams end up with
> identical
> scores, and they all deserve the award. When it comes down to it, what
> matters much more is giving awards to as many deserving teams as possible.
>
> Hope this and Kevin's response help to clarify FIRST's side of things.
>
> Cynthia
> Judge
>
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "KevinHines" <[log in to unmask]>
> To: <[log in to unmask]>
> Sent: Saturday, November 22, 2008 3:17 PM
> Subject: Re: [VADCFLL-L] Tournament Scoring
>
>
> > Annette,
> >
> > Thanks for sharing your thoughts on posting FLL scores.
> >
> > The posting of scores is a topic which seems to come up each year, and
> > there
> > are many good opinions.  Some coaches feel *all* scores should be posted,
> > some coaches feel *no* scores should be posted, and many coaches feel
> > somewhere in between.
> >
> > I'd like to reply to your thoughtful suggestion in a few parts:
> >
> >
> > 1. FIRST Philosophy about Awards: I am a FLL Coach (in my 4th year), and
> I
> > have also volunteered as a judge at FVC (the precursor to FTC) events (at
> > tournaments in Florida)... the FIRST philosophy, as I understand it, is
> to
> > give the awards for the judged categories to as many different teams as
> > possible.  Thus, one team will not receive two awards for two judged
> > categories, (i.e., Presentation, Robot Design & Teamwork).  This is
> > intended
> > to motivate as many kids excited as possible to enjoy the experience, and
> > to
> > have as many teams as possible feel good about their work.  The exception
> > to
> > this rule is the Robot Performance awards, since the Robot Performance
> > scores are posted publicly, so even if a team wins an award for a judged
> > category, they can also win an award for Robot Performance.  When I
> > judged,
> > there were a few teams which could easily have taken 1st or 2nd place in
> > almost every category, but that would not make the other teams feel good,
> > so
> > FIRST has things set up so that the judges deliberate, and select no more
> > than one (judged) award per team.
> >
> > If the judging sessions' scores were posted at all, then at some
> > tournaments, a few teams would dominate, and get most of the awards.
> > Thus,
> > the judging scores are kept private, so that the awards, for the judged
> > categories, can be distributed to as many teams as possible.
> >
> > Whether one agrees with this approach or not, this is the FIRST
> > philosophy,
> > as I understand it.
> >
> > (Personally, I like the FIRST way of giving awards to as many teams as
> > possible.)
> >
> >
> > 2. Judged Events: These aren't really a regular sporting game, like
> soccer
> > or baseball.  The opinions of the judges enter into the judged scores,
> and
> > there's no way around that.  In this sense, the judged events are more
> > like
> > figure skating or gymnastics scores.  Some people feel that a judged
> event
> > is or is not really a sporting event like a game ... thus, posting judged
> > scores is an area of contention.
> >
> > Again, I do like the FIRST way of giving awards to as many teams as
> > possible, and keeping the judged scores *not* posted, is one way to
> > accomplish this.
> >
> >
> > 3. FLL Policy Decisions Come From the Top: FLL is not a democracy, and
> > that's okay with me (most of the time).  I'm in my 4th year of coaching
> > FLL,
> > and one thing I've learned about FLL, is that the important policy
> > decisions
> > about things like what the public is allowed to see (for example: judged
> > sessions & judged scores), are all decided at the top of the leadership
> > structure.  If you can convince the state leadership, you may have a
> > chance
> > of implementing a change.  Perhaps the state leadership might change
> > something if enough coaches requested it, but I have found that the
> > volunteers who run the state organizations are passionate folks who are
> > doing work which they feel strongly about, and they really are doing what
> > they believe is right for the children.  And that seems to include *not*
> > posting the judged scores.
> >
> > I respect the amazing dedication, leadership and passion for helping the
> > children, which our state organizers display regularly.
> >
> > However, I can't recall even one time that they changed a significant
> > policy
> > decision, due to input from coaches (I will apologize if I'm wrong about
> > this).
> >
> > I am impressed that the state organizers can find enough common ground,
> > among all of us, to keep FLL going.
> >
> > They are doing an awesome job, and they have my appreciation.
> >
> >
> > I wish you luck in your effort to make FLL even better.
> >
> > Thanks,
> > Kevin
> >
> > Kevin Hines
> > FLL Coach
> > [log in to unmask]
> > www.RoanokeRobotics.org <http://www.roanokerobotics.org/>
> >
> >
> >
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: First Lego League Discussion
> > [mailto:[log in to unmask]]On Behalf Of Annette Holloway
> > Sent: Saturday, November 22, 2008 11:13 AM
> > To: [log in to unmask]
> > Subject: [VADCFLL-L] Tournament Scoring
> >
> >
> > Just some thoughts about the emphasis on scores -
> >
> > I think it would be nice to have rankings displayed briefly at the end
> > of the tournament for every judging category, and possibly have awards
> > for the second & third  place as well.  That way the Lego table does not
> > appear to be the most important thing.  Our team did incredibly well on
> > their project, did not win an award, but it would have been very
> > encouraging to know if they were second.  That additional feedback would
> > be helpful for upcoming years.
> >
> > Annette Holloway
> > NASA Ninjas
> > Hampton, Va
> >
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