Steps for Successful Season

We will be offering “Office Hour” meetings you can join and ask questions!

Welcome!

Changes to the information below will be RED in color.
Any information that has been replaced or removed will have a strike through it.

Section 1: General Information about events this Season!

Lots of Information…

  • There is a lot of information out there regarding FLL events this season…..
  • To help you (and us), we made these video presentations, and this page (Steps for a Successful Season) on our website to be the main place to find information and the requirements for our West TN FLL Challenge Events this season.
  • Please periodically check back here for updates!  We will also send out emails for big changes!
  • Please know that there may be updates or changes to information provided in this video that will be documented in the text below this video.  We plan to keep this page up-to-date for all requirements…. but won’t be able to update the video for every change!
  • Also, do not forget to always check the Challenge Updates released by FIRST.
  • If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to us!  memphisfirstteams@gmail.com

General Information

  • There will be a Scrimmage and the Championship
  • NO QUALIFIERS THIS SEASON
  • REGIONAL ACTIVITY FEES HAVE BEEN WAVED THIS SEASON
  • All events will be virtual/online via video conferencing.
  • TVA funding has been depleted.
  • You still have to register with FIRST before you can register for one of our West TN events.
  • FIRST has rebranded this program to FLL CHALLENGE.
  • Coaches, please mark your teams as “Intent to return” in your FIRST Inspires dashboard.

Major Changes from Last Year

  • Events will be Online/Virtual.  Some will be interactive some will not.
  • FIRST has developed a platform called REH – Remote Event Hub.
    • Only coaches will have access to the REH, this is a FIRST decision.
  • Judging has changed to Consolidated Judging.
    • Teams will now be judged for Innovation Project, Robot Design, and Core Values in one 45-minute session.  Make sure to review the new rubrics!
  • “Judging Rooms” are now called “Judging Pods”
  • The Awards structure has also changed based on the rubric changes.
  • Robot Field setup is to be for one table/mat/field/robot.  See Challenge Updates for U01 – MISSION M08 SHARING ADJUSTMENT.

New Requirements From FIRST

  • The FIRST Consent and Release Forms must be signed using the FIRST Registration Systems (firstinspires.org Dashboard) and is required for ALL coaches, mentors, volunteers, and YOUTH TEAM MEMBERS!
  • All youth must register via the FIRST on-line Youth Registration System to be eligible to participate in all FIRST programs.
  • Links FIRST has provided to assist:

Same as Last year

  • Coaches will have to register their teams with FIRST.
    • Each team must have 2 coaches assigned to each team that have completed the YPP background checks and have signed the T&C release forms online.
    • Coaches will have to select events via the West TN FLL event portal.
    • Coaches can only select events when the requirements from FIRST have been met as defined above.
    • Don’t worry if you are new, multiple emails will be sent to you on how to access this portal.

Schedule & Deadlines

West TN FLL Event Schedule is available on the West TN FLL Website

Scrimmage

  • Registration via West TN FLL system closes February 24th
  • REH Uploads will open March 1st & Close on March 4th
  • Judging: March 5th – 6th (Friday/Saturday)
    • Coaches will select a time slot via the West TN FLL system
    • Will be full judging.  Coaches will receive Rubrics after event.
  • Robot Round Scoring: Happening Offline
    • Teams will have the opportunity to upload a Practice Round video that will be reviewed (not scored) to ensure the team is meeting the video requirements.  Practice Round videos must be uploaded on March 1st and will be reviewed March 2nd.  Feed back will be emailed to the Coaches.  We suggest waiting to upload Round 1,2, and 3 videos until you have received your Practice Round Feedback!
    • Score Challenging will occur on Tuesday March 9th

Championshop

  • Registration via West TN FLL system opens March 15th and closes April 1st
  • REH Uploads will open April 9th & Close on April 15th
  • Opening Ceremony: April 13th (Tuesday) Live/Recorded (TENTATIVE)
  • Judging: April 16th – April 17th (Friday/Saturday)
    • Coaches will select a time slot via the West TN FLL system
    • Will be full judging.  Coaches will receive Rubrics after event.
  • Robot Round Scoring: Happening Offline
    • Score Challenging will happen April 19th
  • ◦Closing Ceremony: April 20th (Tuesday) Live/Recorded (TENTATIVE)

Virtual Events

Remote Event Hub (REH)

  • FIRST has restricted the use of the REH to coaches only!
  • Coaches will be required to use with the REH for our events this year.
  • Information on how to access the REH will be sent out approximately 1 week before each event.
  • Coaches will have to upload various videos and other documentation to the REH for the events.
  • Coaches will be able to access the necessary meeting links via the REH as well.
  • In addition to uploading videos, Coaches will use the REH to upload their Coach/Mentor Award Nomination Form as well.  MODIFIED Coach/Mentor Nomination form (coming soon)….  We are working on making an online form you can fill out. Details will be sent out before the Championship!

Keeping everyone safe

  • The Coach or Assistant Coach as registered with FIRST is required to be present in ALL interactive virtual meetings that their team members attend.
  • The Coach or Assistant Coach must be registered with FIRST.  Other Parents, Guardians, Mentors, or Volunteers will NOT be allowed as a substitute.  It MUST be the Coach or Assistant Coach as registered with FIRST for that team. If you need someone else, you will need to have them registered as the Coach or Assistant Coach.
  • The Coach or Assistant Coach will be placed in a breakout room before any of their team members are placed in a breakout room.  The main room operators will move the Coach/Assistant Coach to their assigned room and will then move their team members to their assigned room as well.
  • The Coach or Assistant Coach will be required to identify and verify that all of the attendees in the breakout room are members of their team.  We suggest performing a roll-call.  The Pod Moderator and Judges will ask for confirmation proceeding with Judging.
  • When Judging begins, the Pod Moderator will request that the Coach/Assistant Coach mute themselves as to not interrupt the Judging process.
  • Virtual Backgrounds
    • We highly encourage that team members participating should utilize virtual backgrounds.
    • We have a basic graphic you can use, or you are welcome to create your own!
    • Maybe personalize one for your team!
    • Image is available here (coming soon).
  • The main platform we intend to use is Zoom.
    • If your organization does not allow Zoom, please contact us ASAP!
  • FIRST strictly forbids recording video, recording audio, or taking screenshots of the Zoom virtual meeting while your team is interacting with the Judges or Head Referee.
  • If you have any questions or concerns please feel free to reach out to us!

Opening and Closing Ceremonies

  • We are still working on the logistics for the Opening and Closing ceremonies, but plan on there being a live event that will also be posted for viewing after the event.
  • The Closing Ceremony will include the Award announcements!
  • We would like each team submit a single photo, collage, etc. for the closing ceremony.  Coaches are responsible for ensuring that all team members in this photo have registered and completed the required forms with FIRST.
    • Additionally, the coaches are responsible for ensuring that they have consent from the team member parents/guardians to include them in the photo.
    • Alternatively, you are welcome to submit a drawing or other image that is representative of your team that will be included in the presentation.
    • Some Ideas: Screenshot of all members in a Teams/Zoom/Similar call.  Photos before social distancing.  Have a creative team member draw the team.
  • We will send an email to the coaches with instructions on where to submit their team’s photo before the Championship.
  • We will also collect a shipping address where we can ship your team’s award(s) and medallions.

Section 2: Robot Rounds

General info about Robot Rounds

  • Robot Rounds will be recorded and uploaded to the REH.
  • Referees will view the videos offline (no team interaction).
  • Your team will be scored based on the most recent official Challenge Updates.
  • You will need to check the FIRST Inspires website under Challenge & Resources, and RePLAY Challenge Updates.
  • Please know that once you upload a Round 1, 2, or 3 video to REH you WILL NOT BE ABLE TO RE-UPLOAD OR REMOVE YOUR VIDEO!  This is a limitation of the REH we are not able to override!!!
  • Coaches will be required to upload a video for each of the following:
    • Round 1
    • Round 2
    • Round 3
  • Again, Please know that once you upload a Round 1, 2, or 3 video to REH you WILL NOT BE ABLE TO RE-UPLOAD OR REMOVE YOUR VIDEO!  This is a limitation of the REH we are not able to override.
  • Your Round 1, 2, and 3 videos must be recorded within a 12-hour period!
    • Failure to do so will result in the round being given a score of zero.
    • To be clear, you could record 20 videos within a 12-hour period and upload your best 3 rounds if you wanted to.

Robot Round Video Information

  • FIRST has provided a video that goes over what is to be in your video for each robot round.
  • Please also see the Robot Game Video Recording PDF.
  • In addition to the requirements outlined in this video & document, West TN FLL has created some additional requirements that we believe will make the Scoring process easier and more efficient.
  • Teams will be required to meet the requirements in the video & manual above as well as the additional requirements below!
  • Again, all 3 rounds must be recorded within a 12 hour period!
  • Your Table should be configured so that it is only ONE FIELD/TABLE/ROBOT at a time!, NO DOUBLE FIELDS like you would see at a normal event!  The Cooperation mission will be scored as defined in the Challenge Updates for U01 – MISSION M08 SHARING ADJUSTMENT, only team in the match.
  • Precision tokens do not need to be utilized or removed during the video recording.  Referees will perform this while reviewing the videos.  You may leave them on the field or take them off if you wish.
  • No Totes, Boxes, Bags, etc will be allowed.  All parts are to remain in the Home/Inspection Area as we normally require.

WE ARE CURRENTLY CREATING AN EXAMPLE VIDEO THAT INCLUDES ALL OF THE REQUIREMENTS REQUIRED FOR THIS SEASON!

Tutorial Video & Additional Requirements from West TN FLL

  • Teams shall only have at most 2 team members at the table.
    • Please feel free to practice social distancing as required. It is acceptable to only have one team member at the table at a time.
    • Specialists may tag in and out.  Please have the specialists at least 3ft away from the members at the table (or whatever you believe is socially responsible).
    • Make sure the specialists are not in the way of the video.
  • If for some reason you drop the camera, perhaps there is a power failure, or other technical difficulties, you will need to stop recording and re-record the whole process again!
  • Make sure that the entire field remains in view for the whole match.  See some of the suggested camera angles as shown in the Robot Game Video Recording Guide.
    • Holding a cellphone or tablet is acceptable, you do not have to use a tripod or stand, just hold the camera as still as possible!
  • At the beginning of the video you will need to show your West TN FLL Virtual Identity Code (VIC) to the camera.
    • Coaches, you can find a link to this in your West TN FLL Event Portal. Check your email for a link to the portal.
    • You may request a code as many time as you need!
    • Please make sure that you show your West TN FLL Virtual Identity Code for at least a couple seconds and please confirm that you can read the team number, team name, and VIC (virtual identity code).
    • DO NOT use a screenshot or print out your Virtual Identity Code. Please show the Virtual Identity Code page on a phone or tablet live. If the code resets while showing the code to the camera, do not worry! Just press the button to show a new code! The Referees will use the last shown VIC to confirm your team.
  • Team must have the home and inspection areas defined with tape if your team does not have a table.  (as shown in tutorial @ 0:30)
    • Dimensions are provided in the video tutorial.
  • Video must show robot and parts in the inspection area.  This includes using a ruler.  (as shown in tutorial @ 0:56)  Failure to do so will forfeit  M00 Equipment Inspection Bonus!
  • You must show that Bluetooth is turned off by showing the screen on your robot.
  • You must show the starting conditions of the field, take the camera to each mission you plan to complete to show the starting conditions of each mission. Please verbally describe each mission and its initial conditions.
  • In addition to providing a verbal countdown “1, 2, 3, LEGO!” (as shown in tutorial @2:05) a phone, tablet or similar with a countdown timer must be visible in the field of view of the camera.  Most phones and tablets have a timer with countdown function and would be completely acceptable!  There are several free ones in app stores!
  • We would recommend that you place the timer next to the table or have a volunteer holding it.  Do not place the timer on the table so it will not interfere with your robot’s run.
    • Also, we highly suggest that you DO NOT put your fingers in front of the camera for a count down as shown in the video.  Some cameras might have issues focusing once you remove your fingers.  A verbal countdown is all we require!
  • Record the entire 2:30 time period for completing the missions.
  • At the end of the time, take the camera and go to each mission you intend to score points at and provide a close-up.  (as shown in tutorial @ 2:47)
  • Please have a team member verbally state the conditions they believe the team has met for each completed mission!
  • We recommend that the team “score” themselves for each robot round using the Robot Game Scoresheet.  This way the team will know the conditions as they are written on the Scoresheet the referees will be using.
  • You do not have to calculate a final score.

Technical Information for the Robot Round Videos

  • Coaches will upload 3 separate videos for each team for each event.
  • Coaches will NOT BE ABLE TO RE-UPLOAD Rounds 1-3 videos!
    • This is a limitation of the REH system provided by FIRST.  We cannot override this! 
    • Please ensure that you upload the right videos!
    • Each video must be contiguous and continuous without any modification of any kind!
    • This includes pausing, filters, enhancing, multiple angles, text overlays, audio overlays, etc
    • There shall be NO post-processing, post-editing, or post-production changes to the videos.
    • Each video must be single original/raw images from the recording device.
  • FIRST has added a comment that the REH system will only accept videos that are 2GB or smaller. Review the Robot Game Video Recording guide that suggests changing your camera to recording at 1080p!
  • Videos that violate these rules shall be given a score of zero!

Breakdown of what to include in each of your Robot Round Videos

  • Each Robot Game Video should be about 7 minutes long. Please see recommended time allocations below.
  • Opening – about 1:45
    1. Show your West TN FLL Virtual Identity Code to the camera. Please show on tablet, phone, or laptop.
    2. Show Home Base.
    3. Show the robot fits within the inspection area. This includes using a ruler to show the height of the robot.
    4. Show & point out the number of motors used on your robot.
    5. Show that Bluetooth is turned off.
    6. Show your Innovation Project piece(s) as needed for scoring.
    7. Move the camera and show the starting conditions of each mission the team is planning on completing for the round. Recommend that a team member verbally describes the starting state of each mission.
  • Robot Round – 2:30
    1. Move the camera back so that it can view the entire field/table. See the Robot Game Video Recording guide from FIRST for some recommended angles.
    2. We require a countdown timer to be visible in the cameras view.
      • Recommend a phone or tablet with a countdown app.
      • Please have the countdown timer visible in the video. Have a volunteer hold the timer, place it on the ground, or on a table to the side. Ensure team members will not obstruct the camera’s view.
      • We do not recommend putting the timer on your field as it might effect your robot’s performance!
    3. DO NOT ZOOM IN ON ANY MISSIONS DURING THIS TIME!
    4. The video shall show the entire field/table for the entire 2:30 durations.
    5. If the team touches the robot, please provide a verbal reason as to why!
    6. We recommend running the robot for the entire 2:30, but if a team wishes to end their run early, verbally state so and that they are going touch and stop their robot.
  • Scoring – about 1:30
    1. Move the camera and provide a close-up of each mission completed.
    2. A team member should use the official Scoresheet to verbally describe the conditions they believe have been met for each completed mission.

Robot Game Score Challenging

  • Again, Again, Teams will NOT be able to make changes to their Round 1-3 videos once they have been uploaded!
    • We highly suggest teams attend the Scrimmage and use the Practice Round!
  • Coaches will be able to fill out an online form to Challenge all 3 of the Team’s Scored Robot Rounds!
  • The form will require the coach’s email address that matches the email registered with FIRST.  All other emails will be discarded automatically!
  • The form will require a brief description and the selection of a time slot to meet with a head referee via video conferencing.
  • Check the event Schedules above for the day Score Challenging will occur.
  • The Zoom meeting will be limited to 7 minutes.
  • Each team will only be allowed one Score Challenge meeting!
  • All 3 rounds will be discussed in this one Challenge meeting!
  • During the conference call the coach must present, but at least one team member must be there to contest the score (as we normally would).
    • The Head Referee will discuss the challenge with a youth team member, not a coach, mentor, or other adult.
  • The Head Referee will have final say in the matter and make adjustments to the score as necessary.

Section 3: Judging

New Judging starting this year!

  • Previously teams would go do 3 different judging rooms to be judged for Innovation Project, Robot Design, and Core Values separately.
  • Starting this year, teams will be judged for all 3 areas by the same Judging Pod during a 45-minute session.
  • Please review the new rubrics and other information available on the FIRST Inspires website under Challenge Resources.
  • FIRST has provided a Judging Session Flow Chart on their website, but since it is not formatted for Virtual Judging, please review the MODIFIED Judging Session Flow Chart available on the West TN FLL website!

Judging items no longer required….

  • Core Values Poster is no longer required and will not be reviewed during judging, but it is still a good process for your team to learn the core values!
  • Robot executive design summary and/or engineering notebook are not required and will not be reviewed during judging, but again these are good processes/tasks that will help your team succeed!

Online Video Conferencing Judging

  • Coaches will select a time slot for their team(s) to be judged via the West TN FLL event portal.  These timeslots are first-come-first-serve!
  • Recording the Judging session is strictly prohibitedNo exceptions!  This is a requirement from FIRST.
  • If you have not already, please fill out this survey to help us provide enough time slots on weekdays and weekends depending on the restrictions of your team.
  • The Coach or Assistant Coach as registered in your FIRST Inspires Dashboard MUST be present for ALL interactive virtual meetings!
  • Parents, Guardians, or other volunteers are strictly not allowed into the video conferencing sessions!
  • The registered Coach or Assistant Coach will identify and verify that all attendees on the meeting are their team members.  (roll-call)
  • The judging process will begin at the time listed on your schedule.  Please have your team join 5-10 minutes before.  Team members will not be transferred to a breakout room until the coach has joined.
  • All team members must know their official TEAM NUMBER!

Innovation Project

  • Coaches will be required to upload a 5-minute video for the teams Innovation Project Presentation.
    • FIRST has added a restriction for the Robot Round Videos that they must be less than 2GB in size. We are not sure if this applies to the project presentation videos at this time. We recommend if you can to try to limit your video to 2GB or smaller! Will update this later with new information as we receive it!
  • This video will be played by the Pod Moderator for the Judges and team members to watch together.
  • This video may be edited, enhanced, etc.  But a simple cellphone recording is also completely acceptable.  Editing may be done by coach/parent/guardian, but we recommend letting the kids do as much as possible.
  • We would recommend that teams not waste the beginning of their video to include introductions.  But they may if they want!
    • The video does not have to include ‘setup time’.
  • If the team has a poster, back-board, or other material they would like to share with the judges, it must be included in the 5-minute video.

Robot Design Presentation

  • Coaches will be required to upload a 5-minute video for the teams Innovation Project Presentation.
    • FIRST has added a restriction for the Robot Round Videos that they must be less than 2GB in size. We are not sure if this applies to the project presentation videos at this time. We recommend if you can to try to limit your video to 2GB or smaller! Will update this later with new information as we receive it!
  • This video will be played by the Pod Moderator for the Judges and team members to watch together.
  • This video may be edited, enhanced, etc.  But a simple cellphone recording is also completely acceptable.  Editing may be done by coach/parent/guardian, but we recommend letting the kids do as much as possible.
  • We would recommend that teams not waste the beginning of their video to include introductions.  But they may if they want!
  • We highly encourage the team to show code examples!

Core Values

  • Core Values does not require or allow any uploads or submissions.
  • Core Values will be judged through the whole judging session.
  • There will be a reflection period where the judges will ask the team about Core Values and how they functioned as a team.

Feedback

  • Something new starting this year… The Judges will provide the team with some verbal feedback before the team leaves the judging session.
  • The judges will also record their comments as previously done on the rubrics which will be sent to the coaches after the event has ended.