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GSSEM LEGO teams had amazing opportunities, performances at 2019 FIRST World Championships


Expo cover photo

With more than 43,000 attendees from 37 countries, the recent Detroit FIRST World Championship broke attendance records this spring and gave our GSSEM Junior FIRST LEGO teams amazing opportunities to make tons of new friends and present their innovative solutions to problems faced by future moon colonists on a global stage! GSSEM’s two teams and its own FIRST Tech Challenge team---Girltastic—also played host to Girl Scout teams in town for the competition: Girl Scouts of Greater New York, Nassau County, and Suffolk County!  The Sister Girl Scouts connected at the Detroit Service Center over pizza, video games, and of course, Detroit-style pizza!

GSSEM’s two Junior FIRST LEGO League (JFLL) teams--Space Glam and Andrea’s Asteroids, from River Rouge STEM Academy, participated in this year’s JFLL challenge, “Moon Mission.” The challenge allowed teams in grades K-3 to learn about the things humans may face if they were to settle on the moon long-term. Our teams created models that included shuttles, storage facilities, greenhouses, living quarters, and recreation areas!

Space Glam built a full basketball court for their settlers, while Andrea’s Asteroids created an innovative wind/water irrigation system for their greenhouse. Andrea’s Asteroids won the Cooperative Model Award for their excellent teamwork in building their model, and Space Glam won the Creative Model award for their unique approach.

GSSEM’s JFLL teams also got to meet Lenny and Audrey, fellow Girl Scouts from Pennsylvania on two FIRST Robotics Challenge teams, and the Dunlap Eagles Robotics Team (FRC) where they learned more about older FIRST teams, participated in an engineering activity, and learned two new songs.  During the Expo’s main day of competition, GSSEM hosted a large activity space in the JFLL World Festival where all children were welcome to engage in some of the awesome STEM activities GSSEM has to offer: Kids built and raced cars Derby-style, built Leap Bots from the new Brownie Leap Bot Challenge badge, created their own functioning video game controllers using paper and pencils, and explored the solar system with Oculus Go headsets.  Members of GSSEM’s Board of Directors got in on the fun and had helped the girls and watched team presentations.

Way to go, girls!

If you are interested in starting a Junior FIRST LEGO League (JFLL) team (grades K-3) or a FIRST LEGO League (FLL) team (grades 4-5) please visit gssem.org/first or contact Chris Nichols at cnichols@gssem.org.