The youngest competitors in the FIRST Robotics family will be showcasing their projects at the upcoming Brick City Junior Lego League Expo March 12 at Rochester Institute of Technology. The event takes place 11 a.m.- 4 p.m. in the Student Alumni Union.
The event for youngsters ages 6-10 will include displays of team projects using Legos, science demonstrations and other non-competitive events.
“We are expecting at least 10 teams of elementary school teams for the Expo,” says Larry Herb, a fourth-year new media interactive development student and president of RIT FIRST Club.
This is the first year the club will host the event, and it is the first time RIT will host the event for younger students. (For the past seven years, the university has hosted the Finger Lakes Regional FIRST Robotics competition for high school age students.) Herb adds that he is looking to schedule both a high school FIRST Robotics team and Middle school FIRST Lego League team for the Expo so participants can see that the robotics activities and teams extend beyond the junior level.
Openings for teams of two-to-six students are still available. Register at www.rit.edu/first/jrfll. Cost for team registration is $25.
This year’s challenge is called Body Forward. Teams will learn about simple machines as they build a model made of LEGO elements with a motorized moving part, and they will create a team Show-Me Poster to represent their findings.
“This is a chance to get the younger kids excited about science and technology,” says Herb. “For less than the cost of a Nintendo or Wii, schools can fund a team with the materials and kit. And the fun the kids have is priceless.”