Check out the compiled list of frequently asked questions! Click each question to find out more about the answer and available resources. You can find more FAQ pages geared towards students/parentsvolunteers, and teams/coaches (especially if you have already started a team).

How is the FIRST® LEGO® League Challenge program aligned to educational standards in Virginia and DC?

Alignment to the Virginia Standards of Learning: This document outlines direct and indirect alignments between FIRST® LEGO® League Challenge and the Virginia Standards of Learning (SOLs) in English, Math, Science, and Computer Science for grades 4-8. Virginia is releasing new Computer Technology standards this year and we will reevaluate this alignment at that time.

FIRST® LEGO® League Challenge content is aligned to the following…
Common Core – Math & English Language Arts
NGSS – Next Generation Science Standards
CSTA – Computer Science Teachers Association
ITEEA – International Technology Engineering Education Association
ISTE – International Society for Technology in Education
Partnership for 21st Century Learning
CASEL – Collaborative for Academic, Social and Emotional Learning

What is a Class Pack? How is it different from a competitive team registration?

If you are interested in being recognized internationally and nationally, participating in official events hosted by VA+DC FIRST® LEGO® League, and having the potential for progression to regional or national championships, consider starting the individual team pathway.

In contrast, Class Packs are designed to be run by the school or organization. The objective of a “Class Pack” is to provide flexible curricular options designed to develop STEM and other 21st century skills. Additionally, this option allows schools to run their own culminating event.

Are there any professional development opportunities for teachers or support staff?

FIRST Certified Professional Development is available in three ways.
1) Remote – Join a cohort via our flexible learning option that features live collaboration using remote meeting tools and includes hands-on learning using your materials.
2) In-Person Regional – Join us at various locations around the U.S. no need to have your own materials, we provide everything you need.
3) School District On-Site Training – Custom session to meet the needs, program levels, and educator quantity of your choice. Pricing may differ from list pricing. Request a quote.

Self-Paced Trainings:
FIRST Education has created free training resources on the FIRST programs for coaches, mentors, and teachers. These training courses are located within the FIRST Thinkscape Learning Management System. Visit the FIRST Education Professional Development site to learn more about how to access these online resources

To get more information on all the different ways to participate in Professional Development, visit the FIRST Education Professional Development site

What is the cost of a FIRST® LEGO® League Challenge team? Are there any grants available?

The cost to participate ranges depending on the the level of the team and resources that might already be available. Rookie or beginning teams should expect to pay more, while veteran teams will be able to use certain materials and resources from year to year.

One of the major purchases is a LEGO® MINDSTORMS® EV3 Robotics Kit or a LEGO® Spike Prime Kit. This kit provides a small programmable computer, and enough motors and parts to make a machine. If your team already has access to a kit, you can use that kit and not purchase a new one. Returning teams are able to reuse the kit each year.

To find out more about developing a team budget and what is required, check out our Team Budget & Funding page.

Team grants are available on a seasonal and regional basis. To see more resources on how to fund your team through grants, check the FIRST Team Grant Opportunity page

How do you recruit and select team members in a school setting?

** Coming August 2024 **

How do I register my team for a tournament?

You begin the two-level registration process with national FIRST® registration. When you complete the short process (around 20 minutes) and pay your registration fee, you will receive an official team number and other supplemental materials.

Once your team is registered with FIRST® nationally, the coach or team representative should register with VA+DC FIRST® LEGO® League. Registering with VA+DC FLL will allow you to participate in the tournament selection process in December and the opportunity to compete in local competitions, qualifiers, and regional championships.

You can find all the information you need about registering your team here!

What is the FIRST® Youth Protection Program?

The purpose of the FIRST® Youth Protection Program (FIRST® YPP) is to provide Coaches, Mentors, Volunteers, employees, others working in FIRST® programs, team members, parents, and guardians of team members with information, guidelines, and procedures to create safe environments for everyone participating in FIRST® programs.

The FIRST® YPP sets minimum standards recommended for all FIRST® activities. Adults working in FIRST® programs must be knowledgeable of the standards set by the FIRST® YPP, as well as those set by the school or organization hosting their team.

FIRST® expects all teams in the United States and Canada to adhere to all provisions of the FIRST® YPP.

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