Untitled 1 was the winner of the Champion’s Award at World Festival in St.Louis in 2013. The team had seven students from two different schools in Bath, United Kingdom. The members of Untitled-1 had various levels of FIRST LEGO League experience, but Senior Solutions (2012-13) was the first (and only) year that they competed together as a team. The team has long retired, but their robot “The Beast” is still remembered by the new generation of FIRST LEGO League teams.
How did you come together as a team?
Untitled-1 had seven members: Tom, Freya, Dani, Rafi, Joe, Max, and Claudia. Untitled-1 consisted of kids who were school friends, neighbors, friends of other friends, and siblings. We even had one older sibling coach the team. So, there you have it! A big mashup up people from various places. Our FIRST LEGO League experience ranged from none at all to 6 years of FLL goodness!
What did you do after FIRST LEGO League?
A big part of our team’s core values was all about leaving a “legocy” (yep, we totally made up a word). Soon after our victory at World Festival, we set about making this happen. We attended various STEM events including a visit to the Houses of Parliament and made a big effort to spread the word of FIRST LEGO League. We have helped set up new teams at our schools and have run LEGO Robotics taster days for local primary schools. Some of our members are now studying at university and others are in their last couple of years of secondary school.
What is one unique thing about your team?
I think there are two key things that set us apart from other teams. Firstly, our girl/boy ratio. We had four girls and three boys, this is not your average FLL team demographic! Secondly, our backgrounds. We set up the team off our own backs. We came from different schools and had a whole range of ages and experience. This diversity really made our team unique.
Which FIRST LEGO League season was your favorite, and why?
Each of us probably had a different favorite season. One favorite season for some of us was Climate Connections (2008/09). We were lucky enough to qualify for the championships in Denmark. Not only that, we got the chance to demonstrate our robot to the prince of Denmark! We did not do particularly well in that competition, but we had such a great time and the mat that year was awesome.
What is something unique or memorable about your robot or a tip you want to share?
Our robot, “The Beast”, was in fact three robots in one. It had a small robot slotted inside a medium robot which was then slotted inside a large chassis. I would try and explain in more detail, but it’s probably easier to just watch our YouTube Video of “The Beast”. We are really pleased that we are inspiring people with our ‘Beast’ and we want to let everyone know that it takes years of experience to build a robot like ours. Each year your robot will get a little bit better.
Share some tips about the doing the research project
When you start out, no idea is a bad idea. Spend a lot of time just chatting as a team about potential solutions. Don’t worry about committing to a particular idea early in the season. It’s great if each member can go away and research an idea in a bit more depth and present their findings to the rest of the team.
Share some tips about Core Values
Spending time together as a team is the easiest way to get to know each other and improve team chemistry. It’s important you do things together outside of FLL. Going bowling, climbing, swimming. Playing video games together, going out for dinner. These are all great team-bonding activities.
It takes experience to do well in FIRST LEGO League competitions. Don’t expect to win the first time you compete. Enjoy your early competitions and don’t worry too much about the trophies.
Interact with other teams. Look at their robots, watch their projects, and have a good chat with them. You are certain to learn something new that could help you in the future. And it’s just nice to chat with similar people!
What can you do after you have aged out of FIRST LEGO League?
Coaching is as fun as competing! If you are too old to compete or just can’t deal with the stress of another year of competing, then why not coach the team that you were a part of? It’s rewarding, and your experience will be invaluable.