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First Lego League Rhode Island Championship

  • January 17, 2015
  • Roger Williams University
Please join us at the FIRST® LEGO® League Championship tournament on Saturday, 1/17, hosted by Roger Williams University in Bristol.

 FIRST LEGO League is a global program that engages elementary and middle school students in real-world challenges by pairing a robotics competition with a research project based on an annual theme. Globally, almost 27,000 teams compete in 80 countries for a total of over 25,000 kids participating in hands-on, inquiry based STEM learning.

FIRST LEGO League is one of four FIRST robotics programs designed to engage kids, ages 6-18, in science, technology, engineering and math. Founded by Dean Kamen, FIRST, has a 25 year history of making robotics into a team sport that builds workforce and leadership skills. Dean was recently on CBS SundayMorning talking about the importance of FIRST to our country's future—you don't want to miss this segment. It's a wonderful story of one man whose enthusiasm and drive brings together hundreds of thousands of volunteers to help kids build a better future.

Each of the FIRST programs is managed by a local Operational Partner—I serve on the Board of Directors of Rhode Island School of the Future (RISF), the operational partner for FIRST LEGO League and Jr. FIRST LEGO League, serving students aged 6-14. RISF is an all-volunteer, non profit organization that harnesses over 300 volunteers to manage a 14 week FIRST LEGO League season that features 6 public events and the National Robotics Week celebration, the Robot Block Party (hosted in partnership with Brown University's Humanity Centered Robotics Initiative.)

FIRST offers 4 programs for K-12 students, RISF manages FIRST LEGO League and Jr. FIRST LEGO League, the 2 programs for younger students. We collaborate with New England Institute of Technology, the Operational Partner of the FIRST Tech Challenge for middle and high school students, and IngenuityNE/NE FIRST which runs the FIRST Robotics Competition for the high school students, for all of New England. We are all independent organizations, and together, we create a strong pipeline of students who are interested in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) and actively engaged in learning, making and doing. By participating in FIRST programs, kids develop persistence, the ability to deal with open ended problems, and confidence in dealing with complexity. These kids are the leaders oftomorrow.

Here in Rhode Island, over 600 students are part of 64 FIRST LEGO League teams, 40 of which advanced through our qualifying tournament system to Saturday's FIRST LEGO League state championship. We have students participating from around the state, including teams from the Gilbert Stuart Middle School in Providence, and Goff Junior High in Pawtucket. I invite you to stop by the event, hosted by Roger Williams University in Bristol to see the kids in action. We'd be happy to let the kids demonstrate how much they are learning about STEM, communication, and collaboration. You can't help but notice how much fun they are having!  Contact me ( or 401-249-0110) and let me know you're coming—I'd be happy to show you around.

More information: 
Twitter: @FLLRI

Mary Johnson
Rhode Island Students of the Future 
FIRST LEGO League Rhode Island
Twitter/FIRST LEGO League RI: @FLLRI
Twitter/RI Robot Block Party: @RobotBlockParty

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