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October 2009


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Laura Dysart <[log in to unmask]>
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Laura Dysart <[log in to unmask]>
Mon, 5 Oct 2009 17:16:53 -0400
text/plain (87 lines)
Thank you all- the kids had started with the tri-bot- but got obsessed  
with the bridge (tri-bot no can do) which lead to multiple start
overs- I think today all concluded that they would like to build a
simple robot- back to the tri-bot. They are doing fine and are having
fun. I greatly appreciate everyone's suggestions and support. I think
we have done too much work on the research to go back to the drawing
board- for everyone's first year- we may need to stick with it- they
are very much enjoying their train of thought- I think they could
identify where the technology isn't quite where it needs to be for
their ideas to necessarily work- and that further research will have
to be part of the solution. I have really enjoyed this group of kids.
On Oct 5, 2009, at 3:11 PM, Phil Smith III wrote:

> What Nick said!
> I was going to express it this way:
> One big suggestion: calm down. Your role isn't to worry; your role
> is to keep them from worrying too much. Remind them that the table
> performance is ONLY 25%. Remind them that they're rookies (I
> assume). Remind them that they're learning -- that NASA blew up more
> than a couple of rockets before they got things working.
> And promise them that the tournament will be a *blast* no matter how
> they do! Last year a team backed out at the last minute because they
> "weren't ready". That breaks my heart, and makes me think that the
> coaches didn't "get it".
> One of the MANY wonderful things about FLL is that teams who do
> "horribly" at the tournament still have fun. In eight years of being
> involved, I've seen one kid cry, and she had fallen and was in pain
> (and was fine a few minutes later). Even glum faces are rare;
> intense scowls of frustration while watching a robot misbehave are a
> bit more common, of course...!
> --
> Phil Smith III
> Virginia State Judge Advisor, 2007, 2008, 2009
> Judge Advisor, Northern Virginia Regional tournaments, 2007, 2008
> 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 Swayne, Nick
> Sent: Monday, October 05, 2009 2:56 PM
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Subject: Re: [VADCFLL-L] A few new coach questions
> Laura/Danielle,
> This is really supposed to be fun for all. Don't dread the robot!
> You'll see a lot of new teams at all 18 of the regional
> competitions. There are more than 350 teams currently in the system
> and I'd guess half of them are new to FLL.
> The fact that there are 4 components to the tournament really levels
> the playing field for those who have never built robots before. Lots
> of rookie teams build robots that look almost exactly like the tri-
> bot in the instruction book and do just fine at the competition.
> Some actually win because they concentrate on the teamwork and
> research which account for 50% of the total. If the kids can
> explain their experience level, design and programming well -
> they'll do fine there as well.
> Also - if your robot holds the crash test figure for the entire 2.5
> minutes and you don't knock over any of the penalty pieces, you'll
> end up with 95 points.
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