FIRST LEGO League is an annual team-based program for 4th-8th grade. The season begins in late August with the first tournament usually in November.


2016 Season:

Get ready.  Get set.  Roar!  Or you could bark, quack, or squeak, because the 2016 ANIMAL ALLIES season is all about our furry, feathered, and finned friends.  In the 2016 FIRST LEGO League Challenge, more than 28,000 teams of students age 9 to 14 will look into the eyes of our ANIMAL ALLIES.  What might become possible when we learn to help each other?

FIRST LEGO League challenges kids in over 80 countries to think like scientists and engineers.  During the ANIMAL ALLIES season, teams will choose and solve a real-world problem in the Project.  They will also build, test, and program an autonomous robot using LEGO MINDSTORMS technology to solve a set of missions in the Robot Game.  Throughout their experience, teams will operate under the FIRSTLEGO League signature set of Core Values, celebrating discovery, teamwork, and Gracious Professionalism

BadgerBOTS offers teams and coaches support for all three components of FLL: the project, the FLL Core Values, and the robot game.

Project: FLL features a research project based on each year’s theme. The project is a chance for each team to come up with a novel solution to a problem of their choosing and then present what they have come up with to friends, family, community and the Tournament judges.

Core Values: As a BadgerBOTS team, you are always connected to others in our FLL community. We are a great resource to connect with other teams and coaches to mentor and be mentored.

Robot Game: BadgerBOTS provides a great deal of support for new teams. Our education center is open for use as a team practice space, so you can interact with other teams and use our laptops, field sets, and have access to spare parts.

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The Benefits of BadgerBOTS

BadgerBOTS offers the Dane county community an easy entryway to the FIRST Lego League program for students in grades 4-8 (ages 9-14). Any Dane County school team or individual student is welcome to join. Please see Junior FIRST LEGO League program for students in grades 1 – 3. We’re excited for this year’s Animal Allies challenge and the great season that’s in store!




As a BadgerBOTS team you will have access to :

  • A single-payment system which covers team registration, equipment, and fees for one tournament
  • Borrowing a LEGO EV3 Base and Resource kits (so you won’t need to purchase them)
  • A support system of knowledgeable staff, volunteers, and experienced FLL coaches
  • Coaches and Parent Training Sessions
  • A fun Kickoff Event
  • A regularly available work space for your team
    • West side meeting location at BadgerBOTS Education Center (Evenings Monday – Thursday, all day Saturday)
    • East side meeting location at Herzing University TBD
  • Custom team shirts
  • Project materials, use of our giant color plotter for banners and posters
  • A pre-tournament Scrimmage and Project Presentation practice

BadgerBOTS begins supporting teams before the season starts. We host coaches’ trainings during the first weeks of the season, where you’ll be introduced to building with the EV3 LEGO Robotics kit, EV3 programming, FIRST LEGO League Core Values, and experience a full walk-through of the season. You’re invited to our kickoff event in the beginning of the school year, where we’ll match kids to teams and pair experienced high school volunteers with parent/coaches who desire or require additional team mentors. We also support the Badgerland Regional FLL Tournament in Madison.

Nuts and Bolts

Each team needs one or two parents (or other adult volunteers) to coach

Each team needs one or two parents (or other adult volunteers) to coach

Each team needs two active adult mentor/coaches AND two volunteers to help at the November tournament.

We recommend meeting with your team at least twice a week. The BadgerBOTS Education Center will be open for team use  throughout the season from 3 – 9 PM Mondays – Thursdays and 9 AM – 4 PM Saturdays. Whether a student can regularly miss parts of meetings and still have an effective team depends on team dynamics—students usually do better if they have friends on the team.  A single coach coordinating the team meetings is too burdensome for most people. If your child is participating, we expect some parental help—mentor or coach a team, or help out in whatever way works best with your schedule.


The cost for joining BadgerBOTS is $175 for each team member, and scholarships are available. Payments can be made to the BadgerBOTS Robotics Corporation by check or electronically through our registration system. Cash or check can be mailed to the BadgerBOTS Education Center.

Additional donations support the participation of a full and diverse cross-section of our community. Please consider donating at the time of your registration. BadgerBOTS is a 501c3, non-profit organization and all donations are tax deductible.

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