I'm looking for some advice from anyone with experience running multiple FLL teams. This is my second year as an FLL coach and this year we have several more students who are interested in joining the team. So much so that we will either have to make cuts or break into two teams. I've already gotten a sponsor who is willing to fund the additional cost of a second team. The other coaches and I have some concerns though about how much additional time and effort this would be for us. (We know from last year how much work it is!)
We are very interested in hearing from anyone who has done this and what their experience was. Some specific questions:
1. How separate do you need to keep the teams? I'm thinking of having them in the same (large) room while working on robot missions since they tend to break into pairs and work independently anyway. This is where most of our practice time is spent and we, as coaches, just can't spend double the time so we'd kind of need this part to overlap.
2. How about the research project? This is my biggest concern since I would think the teams would need to meet separately for this. However, maybe once they've decided on their separate projects, this is not a big deal. Again, very interested to know how anyone else has handled this.
I'm personally not too worried about sharing ideas between the teams. I've had my own kids involved in Odyssey of the Mind before where they make a big deal out of "Outside Assistance" or "OA". Kids will say "Aw, Dad, I wish you hadn't said that! Now I can't use that idea." I'm sure my FLL kids can be just as self conscious.
Any advice or experience you can relate will be greatly appreciated.
-David Lawrence , Newport News
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