I have lost the trail on this, but I would like to thank the coach who asked for help dealing with a difficult team member.  Part of the reason that I coached FLL was that I am a parent of children who have difficulty handling themselves in a group.  This is more work for volunteers than working with well-behaved children, but is am important experience for these children.

I think that there have been alot of great ideas, and wanted to pass on some things that worked for me.  The boy who seems to thrive on negative attention might be distracted from troublemaking and interrupting if he is kept busy, so a leadership role could help.  

I also asked the kids to help set up for meetings -- clean up didn't work as well since I usually had a few kids stay later working, so we didn't have a clear ending time.  I have had team members who liked taking the responsibility to maintain the field table set up.

I sent the kids out into the yard to play -- this started as a time filler when taking break in a long meeting or waiting for parents to pick up, but became a highlight of meetings.  This helped alot with the teamwork interview because they had practice sorting themselves out to play games without adult intervention.  ( I only went outside when the screaming -- yes from my child -- seemed to get out of hand.)

I posted and discussed the FLL Core Values (listed below) and pointed out when something that happened in a meeting illustrated a core value.  Some years we made a tri-fold poster with the core values listed and team photos to illustrate the core values.  I think this consciousness of the values helped the kids develop as a team.  There were still many squabbles, but the kids with issues definitely improved.  Some teams are made up of kids who are naturally kind and gracious and will do these things anyway, others need to learn and I love it that FLL specifically evaluates the team work aspect.

Core Values

We are a team.
We do the work to find solutions with guidance from
our coaches and mentors.
We know our coaches and mentors don’t have all the
answers; we learn together.
We honor the spirit of friendly competition.
What we discover is more important than what we win.
We share our experiences with others.
We display Gracious Professionalism in everything we
We have fun.

Donna Cornwell
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