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2101 E. River Road | Tucson, AZ 85718
Phone: 520-209-7551 | Fax: 520-209-7575
Office Hours: 8:00am - 4:30pm
CARE: 520-209-7549

Travis Kolter

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Lego Robotics

2020 - 2021 FLL Challenge

The theme for this year's robotics missions and research challenge is physical activity.  The teams were charged with finding ways to address the problem of inactivity, which has serious mental, physical and emotional health consequences. 

Team 5151 developed an idea for a virtual Tour de Tucson using pedalers for seniors in a residential facility.

Team 5153 developed an exercise pedalers for FLL teams that charges the robot's batteries. 

Team 5155 proposed a student walking program they would like to implement at OGMS. 

Team 27725 is introducing peers to Dog Agility as a lifetime fitness activity. 


Congratulations to our  four Foothills Community Schools FLL robotics teams competed on Saturday, February 20 in a remote regional tournament (24 teams from around the state).  Three of the four teams won top awards and are advancing to the state tournament at the end of March.  

Innovation Award - Team 5151: SDS students - Audrey Dessent, Madison Chiem, Simon Crawford, Warren Moore; OGMS students - Nicholas Pickard and Aiden Zhou

This team utilizes diverse resources for their Innovation Project to help them gain a comprehensive understanding of their problem, have a creative, well-researched solution and effectively communicate their findings to judges and the community. 

Robot Design Award - Team 5155: OGMS  students - Braeden Gracy, Estaban Aguirre, Landon Chang, Zac Young; ECMS student Connor Belakovsky; UHS and former OGMS student - Sa'id Badereen

This team uses outstanding programming principles and solid engineering practices to develop a robot that is mechanically sound, durable, efficient and highly capable of performing challenge missions.

Motivate Award - Team 5153: ECMS students - Owen Cantor-Goldner, Christian Pierson, Ethan Lin and Anthony Milo

This award celebrates a team that embraces the culture of FIRST LEGO League through team building, team spirit and displayed enthusiasm.

Our rookie 4th graders on Team 27725: SDS students Katya Berger, Ella Berger, Sophia Barrios, Grade Barrios and Liliana Ruiz, earned 7th place in robot performance.  


At the FIRST Lego League State Championship on March 20, two of the three CFSD Community Schools teams won awards.  Mrs. Charlotte Ackerman is the longtime coordinator of the CFSD FIRST Lego League program and head coach for the teams.  She is assisted by community volunteer, Mr. Mark Haye. who is the co-coach for Teams 5155 and 5153.

All judging was conducted in remote sessions with teams submitting videos of their robot matches.  CFHS students David Berk, Zac Gruber, and Spencer Schiller livestreamed the robot matches while CFHS alumnus, Nik Gruber ‘19, served as the referee.  

Team 5155 PedEx won the Core Values Award.  Team members are Juan Estaban Aguirre (OG, 6), Conner Belakovsky (EC, 8), Sa'id Badereen (OD, 9), Landon Chang, (OG, 8), Braeden Gracy (OG, 6) and Zac Young (OG, 8).  

Team 5151 Psychlists won the Innovation Award. Team members are Madison Chiem (SD, 5), Simon Crawford (SD, 5), Audrey Dessent (SD, 5), Matthew Meislin (OG, 6), Warren Moore (SD, 5), Nicholas Pickard (OG, 6), and Aiden Zhou (OG,6). The team's co-coaches are Sunrise Teacher Judy Dong and parent volunteer Ms. Jenny Dessent.

Team 5153 Turninators qualified for state.  Team members are Owen Cantor-Goldner (EC, 7), Ethan Lin (EC, 7), Anthony Milo (EC, 7), and Christian Pierson (EC, 7).  CFHS student Braden Cantor Goldner serves as a mentor to the team.


What is FIRST Lego League

FIRST Lego League (FLL) introduces young people (grades 4-8), to the fun and excitement of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). It is designed for students do the research and problem solving, which are integral parts of each element of STEM, to meet the yearly Challenge. Students identify a problem and develop an innovative solution.

There are three elements that make up the Challenge: 1. programming an autonomous robot (the Robot Game), 2. creating innovative solutions to a problem (the Project) 3. following the  FLL Core Values  where the children learn that helping one another and the spirit of friendly competition is the foundation of teamwork.

Each year’s Challenge is similar to real challenges faced by scientists and engineers, which leads to an understanding of the work of these professionals and an exposure to career options. The Project gives the teams the opportunity to more deeply explore the theme of the Challenge and propose a solution to a problem they select.

The teams present their projects for feedback from the judges, who often are experts in the Challenge field. FIRST Lego League imparts valuable life skills and excitement about how our students can make a difference in the world.

FIRST Lego League in CFSD

In Catalina Foothills School District, students who participate in FIRST Lego League (FLL) are afforded unique experiences involving a team approach to engineering, programming, problem solving, and research. FLL equips students with tools to be successful in a rapidly-evolving world. FLL presents students with real-world situations and challenges in which they develop their abilities to think critically, apply knowledge at high levels and use technology to access, evaluate and communicate information.
Led by Charlotte Ackerman, CFSD’s Teacher Leader for Science and Engineering, FLL team members work together over a 14-week session to address the current FLL mission and prepare for competition in December.

FIRST Lego League Lite
In the winter and spring months, students who have an interest in participating as an FLL team member in the following school year are encouraged to join FLL Lite. This enrichment experience gives students the opportunity to get a taste of FLL without making the commitment to the full 14-week program. They get to try the current school year’s FLL mission and build their skills for future competitions without actually stepping into the arena of competing.


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