This is beautiful! What a community! About 20 painstakingly responded in just about a day after my post. Your teams are blessed to have you as coaches/mentors/volunteers.
Also To John,
Kathy is exactly right. This is our third year (but I am a newbie coach) and I can say that if you just try to let this happen it can be amazing. The first year we really had no idea what we were doing, but everything amazingly came together (and I can tell you at this point in the season we were ALL ready to throw in our hats and call it a day) Then last year we thought we knew what we were doing, we had a seasoned team, great kids, etc... WELL? we BOMBED. But we're back at it and some meetings it feels hopeless then sometimes meetings are amazing. hang in there- this is organized chaos, but it is a GREAT program and no matter what happens it is worth your collective effort! good luck and see you at the tournament!
Robin (newbie coach)
I did not read the other replies so please excuse me if I've reiterated something.
Sometimes it is not possible to do everything. Some years my kids get it all done, great project, lots of table missions complete (high score), well engineered robot, terrific team work. Other years the teams have been lucky to get a few missions completed and a half ___ project. This is one of those years. Due to computer problems, illness, no coaches (I'm supervising until we can get a real coach) and other random issues, the table mat is not yet completed and robot is not yet built. The kids can't agree on a food to research and cannot come up with a team name! But we still plan to get a robot together, program some missions and go to the tournament even if the project goes wanting this year.
In other words John, do what you can and enjoy the competitive experience. Definitely go to the tournament. You'd be surprised how many missions your robot can get done by simply knowing how to move straight and to turn without any movable arms or lifts. Aim to get 3 - 4 missions done. If you do more - yay!
As for the project, it truly is sometimes the most fun for some of the kids. Try to have the kids look up foods that spoil easily and settle on one. It's not necessary to get too fancy. One of my groups once came in first in the project with no power point, no back board and a very simple presentation. The judges were frankly very impressed with the depth of their knowledge. Maybe you have just 1 or 2 kids interested in that and they can take the lead on that part.
Best wishes for fun season,
From: First Lego League in Virginia and DC [[log in to unmask]] on behalf of John Britto [[log in to unmask]]
Sent: Wednesday, September 28, 2011 5:43 PM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: [VADCFLL-L] Skip the Project?
We are a rookie team just getting started with the 2011 tournament requirements.In the interest of time, we may have to focus on the robot game and not work on the Project/presentation. Is this something that is ok to do?Our team of 7 is barely functioning together and our time may be better spent working on the game!Thanks,John Britto