On behalf of the Kilmer Middle School we would like to thanks the tournament organizer, and everyone at FLL to allow the school to participate at the TJHSST FLL Regional Tournament as “Volunteer Partner”. We cannot believe how much fun you can have working as volunteers at a regional tournament. The students had a blast even though some were exhausted from their competition the day before. Parents had so much fun as well serving as judges, pit manager, and just help out with registration and setup. The kids not only have fun, get community services hours, but gain valuable leadership skills serving as Assistant Judges, Reset Ref, Pit Reset, and Queue (I would call them Robocop – policing the hall way). There are even positions for DJ, score keeper, time keeper, and field assistant.
But the best part of all was seeing those rookie teams made it to competition and trying their best to impress everyone. Even if they walked away without any award, just being there, they are all winner, and persistent will pay off one day as in the story of the Kilmer-I team (aka the famous “Rabid Llama Lords” - but this is another story to be shared later.)
So next year, sign up to compete in an early tournament, get it over with, and signup as volunteers in a different tournament. Better yet, convince your entire school to become a “Volunteer Partner” and see how much fun everyone can have.
Best wishes to those teams going to State, and for the other teams that didn’t, just don’t stop here after the competition. The journey continues … have the kids go out there and share what they have learn, form a robotics club at the school, catch up on NXT programming, prepare for next year, or have the kids go teach what they know about Robotics like the “Rabid Llama Lords” and be inspire to do something greater. Or maybe the kids can just go online to see how NASA engineers plan to free the Mars rover Spirit from its sand trap (http://marsrover.nasa.gov/home/index.html) and see if it can be apply to their situation when their robot is trap out on the competition table, or figure out a way to solve the problem posted by the Yangtze River Expedition Team.
Thank you go out to Mr. Desh Deshmukh, tournament director, and Mr. Stephen Scherr, assistant director, and Mr. Marion Billington, Teacher Sponsor, and all the volunteers for making the TJHSST FLL Regional Tournament possible.
T. (Curt) Tran
Judges Advisor, TJHSST Regional
Volunteers Coordinator, Kilmer MS
I wasn't aware of any problems. It was a very relaxing day thanks to you
and the other volunteers!
coach : Team 3546 Super Nanobot Extremes
design judge : Rocky Run regional
On Sun, 15 Nov 2009 21:49:05 -0500, VA/DC Referee Advisor wrote
> FLL Coaches,
> I'd like to pass my thanks on to you and your teams for the great job they did today, and for the patience everyone showed today when the published schedule went awry. Desh and I had a lot of discussions about what makes a good tournament for the teams and how the schedule can tie all the pieces together so that teams aren't rushed, but also don't have to spend a lot of time waiting for other things. We'll be more careful about both checking for problems and doing version control in the future.
> As a side note, it turns out that building a tournament schedule is a lot like getting over the dynamometer--you have to approach it very carefully in order to keep making progress and avoid spinning your wheels... :-)
> It was really wonderful to meet all the teams today, and to see their wonderful creativity and accomplishments--whether trying one mission or all of them. This year's robot game is the most complex navigational challenge that I've seen as a volunteer, and the teams did a great job of figuring out what they could do with it and taking pride in that, as well as thinking about how to keep improving.
> I think that FLL is a great program, and take my hat (parrot or not!) off to all the coaches and mentors who do all the work to make it possible. I look forward to seeing everyone again in the future.
> Steve Scherr
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