More than just Legos

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More than just Legos

The children participating in the FIRST® Lego League Jr. (FLL Jr.) Expo present their work to viewers. “[The kids] come up to you and present their presentations” said Alex Hill ‘22.

The children participating in the FIRST® Lego League Jr. (FLL Jr.) Expo present their work to viewers. “[The kids] come up to you and present their presentations” said Alex Hill ‘22.

Evan Rosenblatt ‘22

The children participating in the FIRST® Lego League Jr. (FLL Jr.) Expo present their work to viewers. “[The kids] come up to you and present their presentations” said Alex Hill ‘22.

Evan Rosenblatt ‘22

Evan Rosenblatt ‘22

The children participating in the FIRST® Lego League Jr. (FLL Jr.) Expo present their work to viewers. “[The kids] come up to you and present their presentations” said Alex Hill ‘22.

Ella Mouradian, Staff Writer

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On Dec. 15, 2019, the Hollis Brookline High School’s FIRST® Robotics Competition (FRC) team, called The Force Team or FRC 1073, ran the FIRST® Lego League Jr. (FLL Jr.) Expo at Hollis Brookline High School. The event is intended to bring young kids with common interests in engineering and robotics together.

FIRST® Lego League Jr. Expo is a noncompetitive event that includes children aged 6-10. The children showcase their work and create friendships. Students who participate in this event are coached to build certain Lego models and create posters to show what they learned. This convention is noncompetitive, and it allows children to showcase their work.

Occurring since 2014, the FIRST® Lego League Jr. (FLL Jr.) Expo is loved by all of its participants. Evan Rosenblatt ‘22 said, “I have attended this event as a student and as a member of 1073.” While Rosenblatt was in FLL Jr., he counts this as one of his greatest memories from when he was in elementary school. Since becoming a member of FRC 1073, he has helped out with this convention twice.

The FIRST® Lego League Jr. (FLL Jr.) Expo served a purpose of focusing on younger children wishing to showcase their passion for robotics. Rosenblatt said, “Our goal is to get them to enjoy it more, especially because almost all other FLL Jr. Expos are combined with [FIRST® Lego League] FLL Expos (the older program). We wanted to give these kids a day of their own and not have to share it. It makes it more special for these kids.” King believes that this event unites people in our community under the umbrella of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) and helps children decide if they would like to continue their robotics journey. 

Many members of FRC enjoy this competition because they get to help and inspire younger children. “I attended the event last year and, [for] both years, it was an enjoyable experience.” said Jeremy King ‘22, a member of FRC.

“[The kids] come up to you and present their presentations. They’re just so cute!” said Alex Hill ‘22, a member of FRC, who signed up to be a judge for this event. This competition allows for the kids to be able to share their passions with older kids who were once in their place.

“I started participating in robotics and in FIRST® back in second grade when I joined my school’s FLL Jr. team. I joined because I loved Legos and wanted to play with them, but. when I got older, I started to learn it was a lot more than just Legos” said Rosenblatt. The FIRST® Lego League Jr. (FLL Jr.) Expo helped open his eyes to what robotics really was. 

Robotics is more than building robotics. It is a team-building event that teaches people how to solve problems. “My favorite part about robotics is the notion that, because it’s a team, you get a wide variety of solutions to a problem, which teaches you about how to lead groups of people, how to collaborate and [how to] get the best of each idea into one cohesive solution,” said King.

Competitions and events like these connect students with the love of robotics. “It is amazing at competitions to meet other people from other schools and from around the world and be able to talk about a common subject,” said Rosenblatt. 

The Force Team can be seen next at the Northshore District Event on March 13, 2020!