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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:VADCFLL-L@it- 
> listserv1.jmu.edu] On Behalf Of Brian Nussbaum
> Sent: Friday, October 30, 2009 1:08 PM
> To: [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.
>
> Thanks.
> -- 
> Mr. Brian Nussbaum
> Mathematics Teacher
> Thomas Harrison Middle School
>
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