Getting Started With FLL Challenge

Get Started With FLL Challenge!

Getting started with FLL Challenge further expands the impact of STEM in your community. The best way to get started with FLL Challenge is to start a team! Interested students can also potentially join an already existing team. View this list to get an idea of what you need and what to expect this season!

Quick Links

Season Calendar

Due to COVID-19 the usual FLL Challenge Season Schedule is a bit different. We will continue to communicate new dates and information on Iowa FLL Challenge events.

  • August 4:

    Global Challenge Release

  • November 12th:

    Iowa Regional Qualifying Tournament Registration

  • November-June:

    Tournament/Festival Season

  • March 2021:

    Iowa FLL Challenge Championships (more information coming soon!)

  • July and August 2021:

    FIRST Championship in Houston, Texas and Detroit, Michigan, USA.

Start A Team

It is very easy to get started with FLL Challenge! First, you need to find a group of kids interested in participating. Teams can consist of 2-10 members, ages 9-14. You can form a team from any group of interested kids, after-school programs, neighborhood groups, youth organizations, or just a group of friends.

Next, you need to find two adult coaches. You don’t have to be a scientist or engineer to be a coach! Teachers, parents and technical professionals all make great coaches. The coach’s role is to assist the team in independent learning – not to directly assist the team in the problem-solving process.

Steps to Starting A FLL Challenge Team

  • STEP 1:

    Find 2-10 Team Members and 2 Team Coaches

    To start a team you will need Team Members to share, innovate, and create their great ideas! Then you will need two coaches to act as guides and enable your team to reach their full potential. Team Members must be between the ages of 9-14 and Coaches must be 18 or older. People with all backgrounds and skillsets are encouraged to join a FLL Challenge Team as a Team Member or Coach and can start with no STEM experience!

    Want to learn more about becoming a coach? Click Here!

  • STEP 2:

    Understand Season Budget

    There are cost associated with starting and maintaining an FLL Challenge Team. You can take a closer look at all of those costs on our FLL Challenge Budget and Funding Page. If your team can not afford the costs listed, there are grants and fundraising ideas available through FIRST, sponsors and especially through some Iowa based companies. This information can be found through the link listed above.

  • STEP 3:

    Complete Team Registration with FIRST

    In order to be recognized as an official FLL Challenge Team, your team will need to register with FIRST. Registering your team with FIRST also gives you access to season materials, discounts in their store, and qualification to register to compete at an Iowa FLL Challenge event. Register your team with FIRST.

  • STEP 4:

    Learn and Understand The Season Challenge

    Each year FIRST releases a new challenge based around a STEM-related problem or topic. Challenges are released in early August and start with a kick-off video explaining the challenge. These challenges come with associated tasks such as the Robot Game Missions, Robot Design Presentation, and an Innovation Project Presentation. To learn more about this year’s challenge and get related resources view our FLL Challenge Season Challenge.

  • STEP 5:

    Register For an Iowa FLL Challenge Event

    Your team can show off all their handwork and creativity at an Iowa FLL Challenge Qualifier Event. These events usually occur all over Iowa, but this year will occur virtually. In order to participate in one of these events, your team needs to complete event registration. To learn more about registration and deadlines to register, view our Iowa FLL Challenge Event Registration. This year registration will start on November 12th. Teams can qualify for the Iowa FLL Challenge Championships at these Qualifier Events.

  • STEP 6:

    Register to Receive FLL Challenge Team Blasts

    We try to keep in touch and provide helpful information to our team throughout the season. We do so mainly through our FLL Challenge Team Blasts. Click the link to register for our FLL Challenge Team Blasts.

  • STEP 7:

    Prepare for your event!

    Once all of your registration is completed your team can focus on their robot and getting ready for their event. If you are interested in learning more about what an event will look like, view our FLL Challenge Events Page.