FIRST LEGO League is an exciting alliance between FIRST and the LEGO® Group. It’s a robotics program for 9 to 16 year olds (9 to 14 in US/CAN/MEX), which is designed to get children excited about science and technology — and teach them valuable employment and life skills. Teams of up to 10 kids program an autonomous robot (using a LEGO MINDSTORMS® robot set) to score points on a thematic playing surface, create an innovative solution to a problem as part of their Project, all while guided by the FIRST LEGO League Core Values. These three elements – the Robot Game, Project, and Core Values – make up what we call our yearly Challenge.
FIRST LEGO League combines the engineering challenge of a robotics competition with real-world problem solving and inventing. Team members learn science and technology skills and valuable employment and life skills at the same time. The Core Values are the cornerstones of the FIRST LEGO League program. They are among the fundamental elements that distinguish FIRST LEGO League from other programs of its kind. By embracing the Core Values, participants learn that friendly competition and mutual gain are not separate goals, and that helping one another is the foundation of teamwork.
The FIRST Core Values
We express the FIRST® philosophies of Gracious Professionalism® and Coopertition® through our Core Values:
- Discovery: We explore new skills and ideas.
- Innovation: We use creativity and persistence to solve problems.
- Impact: We apply what we learn to improve our world.
- Inclusion: We respect each other and embrace our differences.
- Teamwork: We are stronger when we work together.
- Fun: We enjoy and celebrate what we do!
How does it work?
Each year, FIRST LEGO League releases the Challenge in early August. Teams may start to meet before then, but the Challenge release day is when teams learn the details of this year’s Challenge and really start working. Teams usually meet one or two times per week for eight weeks. How long your team meets may depend on many factors such as when your team plans to attend a tournament. Tournament dates vary from region to region, so your coach will need to check the schedule. Your team’s coach may adjust the number and length of the meetings as needed. Check with the coach if you have any questions about the meeting schedule.
Many teams spend time at each meeting working on all four parts of the FIRST LEGO League Challenge experience: the Core Values, the Robot Design, the Robot Game, and the Innovation Project. Some teams choose to divide into sub-teams so that different groups are working on different tasks. Throughout the season, your child might work with teammates on tasks such as:
- Building a LEGO MINDSTORMS or SPIKE Prime robot and attachments
- Programming the robot to move on its own and perform missions
- Learning about engineering and physics concepts (sometimes learning them the hard way)
- Testing different designs and making adjustments
- Learning about the Challenge theme
- Choosing a real-world problem to research
- Inventing a solution to the problem the team chose
- Presenting the team’s solution to other people
Your commitment to your child’s involvement in FIRST LEGO League Challenge is crucial to his or her success in the program. FIRST LEGO League Challenge is a journey of self-discovery for everyone involved: team members, coaches, parents, and volunteers. Please consider mentoring your son or daughter’s team in your area of expertise, planning fundraisers, or providing a place for the team to meet. You’ll be glad you did! Alongside adult Mentors, teams solve problems using engineering concepts, presentation techniques, and robots. Everyone learns skills they can use for life, including respect, professionalism, teamwork, leadership, creativity, and spirit.
Start a Team
Participating in FIRST LEGO League is an amazing experience for both the kids and the adults involved. With your guidance, the children on your team are going to inspire you, and those around you, in surprising ways. If you have no technical background, don’t be nervous. The team members are the ones who do the work. You only need to ask the questions and watch them… GO!
FIRST LEGO League is more of a celebration than a “competition.” Coaches help other coaches. Teams help other teams. We want everyone who participates – team member, coach, or event volunteer – to have a fulfilling experience. That’s the reason we built FIRST LEGO League upon a set of Core Values that guides everything we do.
The following steps will give you an idea of what coaching an FIRST LEGO League team is all about. You will need to adjust to your schedule, but you will see that anyone can get kids excited about science, technology and engineering.
How much does it cost?
Average Cost for a New Team
Average Cost for a Returning Team
Steps for Starting a Team
This page lists the available Grants and other financial aid opportunities for our FIRST LEGO League program, if any are available. Click the entires below to learn more!
2023 Challenge: MASTERPIECE
Lights, camera, STEAM! Science, technology, engineering, arts, and math (STEAM) inspire big ideas, bold action – and creativity. Our skills make it possible to create art and experiences that bring us together, entertain us, and move us.
During the 2023-2024 FIRST season, FIRST® IN SHOWSM presented by Qualcomm, we’re shining a spotlight on the role STEM plays in the arts and empowering young people to design and build a world of endless possibilities. The future is a place you will create.
Season Standards Manual
The Season Standards Manual contains everything you need to know to be successful in FIRST LEGO League in Central California. This manual merges multiple sections and FIRST documentation into on place for teams.
Tournaments and Scrimmages
2023 Official Events
Regional Team Status List
Below is a list of teams and team status for teams in the Central California Area.
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