Dec., 2017

We had a terrific season. We won the showmanship award because our presentation was so well done. We are proud of what we learned and accomplished. Remind is how I now communicate with the participants.

Get pumped for the FIRST® LEGO® League Jr. 2017/2018 season. In the AQUA ADVENTURESM Challenge, more than 40,000 children will navigate the uncharted waters of this important resource. Find out where the water you use in your daily life comes from, and what happens on its way to you. Where will this current voyage carry you?

We will begin practice in late August or early Sept. We will practice during Insights class time 2x a week until our regional competition. Traditionally, our regional event is held on a weekend in December at the Putnam Museum.

I am looking forward to a terrific season of learning for the students and for myself.

I am so proud of the Bee Builders! They did such a great job in St. Louis. They explained our project well to the judges. They worked as a team to accomplish goals and overcome challenges. We were able to meet and see others from all over the world. Being awarded a trophy for our programming skills made the whole event even better. I appreciate all the support from parents. The 6 weeks notice didn't give families a lot of time to make it work but every family did make it work! Horray for all of us!

April 13.
The buttons are done and picked up. The Cardinal tickets have arrived. I will send them home with the students after Tuesday's practice.

March 10
Please be sure to get your hotel and badging taken care of. The hotel block is good through March 14th. After that the hotel rooms are open to anyone. Even if you are not staying at the hotel with the team, you need a badge so you can enter the venues without standing in long, long security lines.

March 4,
We were selected as the team to represent Iowa at the World Expo in St. Louis. I have funding to cover the team registration ($300). Parents will need to pay for their family's expenses, including those of the Jr. Lego Leaguers. More information will be sent home and posted as it becomes available.

What a wonderful learning opportunity we have! It is an honor to be chosen. We will meet people from all over the world. We all share at least one interest- legos and/or programming. What an opportunity for us!

The director of the Iowa FIRST Lego League program nominated us as the team to represent Iowa at the World Expo. She was one of our judges. Other board members who were judges at other Expos are able to nominate teams. We will hope that our nominator was a skilled writer so that we get picked!

Her email did not tell me what the time line was. I found out that the nomination process is open until Feb. 15. I don't know if/when/how nominated teams are notified of the results so we will wait. I am so thrilled that we were nominated. What an honor out of all the Jr. LL teams on Saturday and Sunday at the Putnam.

Dec. 15
Here's a couple of photos!

Getting ready for the Expo.

Dec. 11
Best Synergy award winner! That award is for the team which has their model including motors working together well and fitting the team. I am so proud of the Jr. Lego Leaguers for under taking the challenge of using 5 motors in our display. That is a lot to keep track but the crew did it and did it well.

Dec. 1, 2016

Our Expo is Saturday, Dec. 10 at the Putnam Museum (1717 W. 12th St., Davenport, IA) from 10:30 -12:00.

The school suburban leaves at 9:00 from the elementary school. Team members need to wear their team shirt. We will return at 3:00 to the elementary school. Please pick up your lego leaguer there if he/she is riding back with me. Have your Jr. Lego Leaguer bring $$ for lunch if he/she is staying with me for the ride back to school.

I’d like the Jr. Lego Leaguers to ride the suburban together with me to the Expo. We’ll travel there as a team. If that doesn’t work for you let me know, and we will meet you at the Putnam Museum.

Nov. 22
Here's our script. Please help your child practice. He/She doesn't have to know his/her speech word for word. He/She can share the important parts since it's more of an explanation.

Nov. 7
Our model is terrific. We have a bee flying around a flower and a cheetah with moving legs. One more group is working on a helicopter. Now we need to finish up our model and start our presentation. We will also need to determine our shirt design. We are as busy as the bees we are learning about.

Today, a gifted education teacher from another district is coming to observe me and we are going to tell her all about Jr. Lego League. Maybe she will want to start a team at her school.

Oct. 15

Our Expo is Dec. 10 at the Putnam Museum. We are in the morning session. We will travel as a team to the Putnam. Parents may take their favorite Jr. Lego Leaguer after we are done with what we need to do. There will probably be an awards ceremony that you'll want to stay for.

Sept., 2016
We have a plan for our model and have started researching our animals that share a habitat with a bee. We are excited about building our model. We spent a few weeks on building general models so we could understand how the computer programming worked and so that we could understand how to use gears to make pieces move.

July 27, 2016

I am looking forward to a great Jr. Lego League season.

Here's a link to the Junior Lego League website. When you visit the website, you can read all about Jr. Lego League. I think it is a wonderful program for third graders.

This year's theme is about animals. The specific challenge won't be released until later this fall. We will be learning how to program using the WeDo 2.0 equipment. This equipment is new to our school. Previous teams used the WeDo 1.0. The 2.0 is quite different. It has been a summer challenge for me to learn how to program and use the materials. It is due to the generosity of Lyondell-Basell that we have WeDo 2.0 items.

We do our Jr. Lego League research and work during the school day. We will meet a couple of times per week from early in the school year until our expo in December.

external image creature-craze-logo.jpg


Dec. 29
Hooray for our Master Programmers. What a terrific job they did at the Expo and in their presentation to State Senator Rita Hart. She was unfamiliar with Jr. Lego League and she was so impressed that 8 year olds could do all this. I am impressed, also. What a hard working crew.
jr ll.jpg

rita hart.jpg

Dec. 6
It is finally the week we have been looking forward to for months!
Dec. 7 and 8 the Jr. Lego Leaguers need to wear their shirts to school. We will be giving our presentations to others.
Dec. 12 the suburban leaves at 11:45 AM from Camanche Elementary School. Our Expo is done at 2:30 so we should be back at Camanche Elem. by 3:30.
Dec. 15, the Jr. Lego Leaguers need to wear their team shirts again. State Senator Rita Hart is coming to my classroom to hear the Jr. Lego Leaguers share their project.

Nov. 28
Our model:
The Raining Recyclers:

Nov. 24
Our event times have been determined. We are in Junior Lego League section 2. Our event is 1-2:30 at the Putnam Museum on Saturday, Dec. 12. We will be judged sometime during that time period.

Our school suburban will leave from Camanche Elementary School at 11:45. I would like to students to be wearing their team shirts. It would be useful if each had a water bottle because a drinking fountain might not be near by. A snack or two is always nice.

After the our event is over, the students may return with me to Camanche Elementary or you may take your Junior Lego Leaguer with you. If you take your third grader, I will have you sign a form because I don't want any of my Raining Recyclers left at the Putnam because there was confusion over who was taking the child.

It is fine if you would rather meet us at the Putnam. Just let me know so I can plan accordingly.

While we are at the Putnam I encourage my third graders and families to watch the Lego League competition for a little while. It's good information to see what the grade 4-8th grade competition is like. Lego League is a big jump in difficulty and intensity. It is also very enjoyable.The Camanche Middle School teams from grades 5, 6, 7, and 8 will be competing. It will be fun to cheer them on if schedules allow.

The Raining Recyclers will be giving their presentation to the other third graders and all the second graders on Dec. 7 and 8 in the afternoon. So please have your favorite third grader wear or bring his/her team shirt those days.

Please help your Jr. Lego League practice his/her lines for the presentation. The lines do not have to be recited word for word. However, the important information needs to be relayed to the judges and audience.

The team is doing a fine job. We have a detailed model with multiple moving parts and some programming involved. They did the thinking and creating with just a little guidance from me. The third graders had to work as a team because there was too much for any one person to do. I am very pleased by what they have created. You will be proud when you see their presentation and you will want to take a few photos or videos.

Nov. 8
Here's the screen print for our team shirt.

Oct. 20

Our Expo will be Dec. 12 at the Putnam Museum in the afternoon. The exact times are yet to be determined. However, I am guessing the team and I will leave from school in a school suburban at 11:00 and return about 4:00.

We now have a project and are in the early stages of researching information and building our model. We will be following the path of what could happen to a worn out umbrella. We will be working on a display board and, soon, will start designing our team shirt.

I am pleased with our progress so far. We had a good start before we had to stop for the CogATs and conflict manager training. it looks like we will be resuming our steady progress now.

Sept. 21
We are going on a field trip to the Clinton County Landfill on Oct. 5 for the afternoon. We will be learning about recycling which is our theme for Jr. Lego League. We will be on a school bus along with the Lego League team. On Oct. 7 Brad Seward, Director of Operations and Education of the Landfill, will share more information with us.

Last week, Jeff Jones and Hilary Feyerson, engineers from Lyondell, came to teach us about gears.


I have no idea why this photo won't post correctly. I am glad the one below is posting correctly.


August 25, 2015
Welcome to a fun and interesting season where we will become Waste Wise.
Please see the link below for an overview of our season.

March 24, 2015
One of these Fridays I hope to bring the Jr. Lego Leaguers to Riverfront Park so we can see their interesting spongy play surface. However, this trip will wait until after spring break because it's a little chilly now. I'll send out permission slips which need to be signed and returned because we will leave the school and we will not return to Camanche until closer to 4:30 or so.

March 16, 2015
I just found out that the QC Times ran a little article about The Unstoppable Six on March 6.

March 13, 2015

This is a draft of the button we'll be handing out at the World Expo. I hope to order 100 buttons from Clinton Printing tonight after Jr. Lego League. Elli designed the button and we all agree that she did a terrific job of including visuals about our team and our state! It will be an eye catching button.

Feb. 26, 2015
Mr. Jeff Jones, an engineer from LyondellBasell, came to offer some of his engineering expertise to our group. I think there is a lot of value in bringing in experts to work with the students. Excellent progress was made on some of our building challenges. We loo forward to Mr. Jones coming again when he can.

The new swing made by Emily, Jeremy, and Mr. Jones. This is one of the new motors purchased with money from Toshiba. Toshiba donated $400 to my program for a project I am doing with the second graders. The donation included the new motors which the third graders are currently using. We greatly appreciate Toshiba's support in this matter.

Feb. 7

Schedule update
Thursday, April 23
8:30 team leaves school in suburban
2:00-5:00 Team Registration and Model/Poster drop off at Union Station.
6:00-7:30 FIRST Opening Ceremonies for the Jr. Lego Leaguers, Lego Leaguers (grades 4-8), and the high school teams in the Edward Jones Dome.
(We will get there early so we can get good seats.)

Friday, April 24
8:00 Team Registration and Badging opens at Union Station
9-12:30 Reviewing and Team Activities at Union Station Ballroom
12:30-1:30 lunch
1:30-4:00 Reviewing and Team Activities at Union Station Ballroom
6-7:00 FTC (high school age) and Jr. FLL activity Outside Mall at Union Station
(I am hoping we can visit the wonderful City Museum during the portion of the day where we are not meeting with the judges.)

Saturday, April 25
8-11:00 Jr. FLL activities
11-12:00 Jr. FLL team pack up
2:00 Award Ceremony seating opens at Ferrara Theater in America's Center
2:30-3:30 Jr. FLL Awards Ceremony at Ferrara Theater in American's Center
6:00 FIRST Closing Ceremonies at Edward Jones Dome
7-9:00 First Finale at Edward Jones Dome

Here's the link to the Championship website:

What a terrific article in Clinton Herald about The Unstoppable Six.

Feb 2
1. Please make reservations at the following hotel: Holiday Inn Express & Suites - St. Louis Airport. This hotel has an indoor saltwater pool and free breakfast. It is less costly than the hotels downtown. We can take the Metrolink into St. Louis or we can take the highway in. The address is 10,000 Natural Bridge Rd in St. Louis, MO. The telephone # is 1-314-736-1710. The Expo for us starts April 23 and ends April 25 so you'll want to stay 2 nights.

2. On to the team registration. For the World Expo, the organizers want all the team members to fill out their consent forms electronically. Over the weekend I emailed an invitation for your child to join our team, TEAM 378. I used the email address you listed on the school forms. If you didn't receive an email please email me at Then I can send your invitation electronically to that address. It would be great if you could get this done within the week because I have to do a few more things with the invitation.

3. The World Expo requires everyone who is attending to have a badge. If you don't have a badge you can't get inside the venue. I have requested a badge for the 6 members of The Unstoppable Six. I'd like you to let me know who from your family may be attending. I need to know how to spell each attendee's name so it would be great if you printed neatly or emailed me the names. I'd rather you include people who may attend and I can delete their names later as opposed to having to add their names later in case there are a limited number of badges available or I get busy and your last minute request gets accidentally overlooked.

One week after the World Expo is the Culture Fair so I will be busy with preparations for both events and would prefer to get some of the prep done earlier if possible.

On Feb 1, when I requested the badges for the team, more than 2900 badges had already been requested. This is a huge event so be sure to reserve a hotel room.
4. Find your family's The Unstoppable Six t-shirts. The kids and I will be wearing them daily at the Expo.

5. Return the permission slip for your child to attend the Jr. FLL work times. They will be after school on many Fridays in February, Feb. 6, Feb. 13, and Feb. 20. We will meet in my classroom from 3:15-3:45. The team members need a signed permission slip to stay after. If you are picking up your Jr. Lego Leaguer, please park in the parking lot visible from my classroom. Then it's easier for us to see whose ride is out there. We will usually come out the door by the gym unless someone has forgotten homework. In that case, we'll come out the door by the third/fourth grade classrooms.

Jan. 26, 2015
We qualified for the World Expo!!! There are only 60 teams from the world invited to this event. There are pictures further down below are from my last year's team when the Disaster Masters went to the World Exp. Our trip will be similar in many respects.
Here's the information that I know so far:
Dates: April 23-25 in St. Louis, MO. Mr. Gray and I will bring the team down/back to St. Louis in a school suburban. If you'd prefer, you can drive your child. We want parents and families to attend this event also. You can caravan with us or drive down later. I will be contact parents to ask for a tentative commitment so I know which parents are attending.
Cost: The school district will pay the $300 registration fee for the team. Families are responsible for their Unstoppable Six team members' expenses-hotel, food, souvenirs, etc.

Preliminary itinerary- Times may be changed but this gives you a general idea of the events.
Thursday, April 23:
10:00 team leaves school in suburban
2:00-5:00 Team Registration and Model/Poster drop off at Union Station.
6:00-8:00 FIRST Opening Ceremonies for the Jr. Lego Leaguers, Lego Leaguers (grades 4-8), and the high school teams in the Edward Jones Dome.
(We will get there early so we can get good seats.)

Friday, April 24
8:00 Team Registration and Badging opens at Union Station
9-12:30 Reviewing and Team Activities at Union Station Ballroom
12:30-1:30 lunch
1:30-5:00 Reviewing and Team Activities at Union Station Ballroom
6-7:00 FTC (high school age) and Jr. FLL activity Outside Mall at Union Station
(I am hoping we can visit the wonderful City Museum during the portion of the day where we are not meeting with the judges.)

Saturday, April 25
8-11:00 Jr. FLL activities
11-12:00 Jr. FLL team pack up
2:00 Award Ceremony seating opens at Ferrara Theater in America's Center
2:30-3:30 Jr. FLL Awards Ceremony at Ferrara Theater in American's Center
6:00 FIRST Closing Ceremonies at Edward Jones Dome
7-9:00 First Finale at Edward Jones Dome

I haven't selected a hotel yet but I will send home a note with that information when the hotel is determined. Families will need to make their own reservation. It will be more fun if we are at the same hotel. Any recommendations or hotels to avoid?

People attending will need a specific admission badge. I will send home the link for that information when it is available. I will also need you to fill out an permission slip at a specific site. I will send home that link when it is available.

Many teams will be handing our free souvenirs at the Expo. Any ideas on what we can hand out? I have a little money we can use to purchase something. Let me know if you have any ideas. It would be great to have something connected with Iowa or US or the midwest. We will be meeting students from all over the world.

The Unstoppable Six and I will start meeting again in a couple of weeks. We will meet once a week after school so we can improve what we have and make it world class!!

Please find your child's Unstoppable Six shirts. We'll be wearing that shirt each day of the Expo.

I am looking forward to this unique opportunity. We will learn so much at the Expo!

Please contact me and let me know if you'll be attending the Expo so I can plan accordingly.

Here's a link from the Jr. FLL website which gives you an idea of what the World Expo will be like.

Jan. 7, 2015
We had a great season. I am so proud of what we accomplished. The kids learned a lot and had some fun along the way. This semester selected third graders will learn how to program the EV3 robots.

Dec, 2014






Dec. 4, 2014

Our official exhibition time is Saturday Dec. 13, 1:30-3:00. We will be in the Palmer room which is on the second floor of the Putnam. We will be exhibiting with 5 teams from Bettendorf, 1 team from LeClaire, and a team from Iowa City. This is not a contest where we get ranked and our ranking are shared. There is no first, second, etc. place. That happens in the 4-8th grade Lego League competition. However, we want to perform as well as we can.
The team suburban will leave from the elementary school at 11:30 so we arrive at the Putnam in plenty of time. There will be a 32 team Lego League contest going on at the Putnam so we are being advised to allow extra time for parking. Last year we had to park in the overflow parking which was a block or two away from the Putnam.
We are done at 3:00. You may take your Jr. Lego Leaguer after signing him/her out from me or your child may ride the suburban back to the elementary school. We should be back by 4:00. Please pick up your child promptly.

Dec. 1
What an awesome team we make.



Nov. 28
I have the team shirts. They will be given to the Jr. Lego Leaguers on Monday. Please see the schedule below so you know when your Jr. Lego Leaguer needs to wear a team shirt. The shirts look great!

W Dec. 10 Jr. Lego League Wear team shirt today 11:30-11:50 Sharing presentation with Mrs. Turner's & Mrs. Johnson's classes

TH Dec. 11 wear team shirts 11:30-11:50 Jr. Lego League presentations to Mrs. Clarke's and Mrs. Knight's classes

Sat Dec. 13 suburban leaves from Camanche Elementary School at 11:30 AM. Wear team shirt.

Nov. 25
The team members' shirts are paid for. If any adults would like shirts, please turn in your $12 per shirt to Mrs. Kennedy by Wed., Nov. 26. A note was sent home with your Jr. Lego Leaguer on Friday, Nov. 21. The adults' shirts will just like the team members' shirts but probably a size or two larger. Thanks!

Nov. 18
I am still waiting for CustomPak to let me know about paying for our team shirts. Once I know how the shirts will be paid for, I can send home notes to let parents order shirts if they'd like to. So it is a waiting game.

Our model of the playground is about done. Now we are creating our display board and that will lead up into creating our presentation. We will be sharing our project with other classes in December so we are well practice before we meet the judges.

Nov. 11
Our model of an improved and safe playground is basically done. We incorporated all 6 simple machines. Now we are working on the display board, gathering information and typing it up. Several of the team members designed the team shirt "The Unstoppable Six." I am waiting to find out if CustomPak will fund the third grade team shirts since they are paying for the fourth grade team shirts.

Friends and family will be able to purchase team shirts. They would be great to wear at our Regional event. The cost will be approximately $12 per shirt. I am awaiting a copy from Adcraft then I can send an order form home. If the shirts generate additional money, we will put it toward the Jr. Lego League program.

Oct. 29, 2014
Registration was opened for the Jr. Lego League event. Our contest is SATURDAY, Dec. 13 in the afternoon at the Putnam Museum. The time we need to show up hasn't been determined yet. We will meet at the elementary school and travel via school suburban. I am guessing that we will leave from the elementary school about 12:30 with the event to start at 1:30. The event will last about 2 hours so we would return to the elementary school around 4:15. You could take your Jr. Lego Leaguer with you when we are done sharing our project with judges. We'd love a good cheering section so we hope friends and families come to the Putnam to cheer us on.

Before Dec. 13 we need to:
finish our playground by incorporating the 6 simple machines in our playground equipment
design our team t-shirt
write our presentation
memorize the lines for our presentation

In early December we will be sharing our project with the other third grade classrooms. This will give us some practice sharing in front of a group.


Oct. 26, 2014
We are working hard on our project. We are building a safer playground where all children can play safely especially students with special needs. We have to incorporate the 6 simple machine types into our project.

We interviewed Ms. Wilkening, a special ed. teacher so we could gather information about necessary safety features. We also shared our ideas about playground equipment with her so she could mention features that we might have overlooked.

We will soon begin designing our shirts and writing our presentation. We will also have to create a display board with the required information.

There have no been signups for our Regional event yet. We are hoping for December 14 at the Putnam but that depends on the number of teams in the Lego League tournament at that site on that date.

We thank John Deere for paying our team registration. We appreciate their support.

Sept. 14, 2014
Choose a place where we could learn something
Choose a specific tool you could use to learn something and find out more about it.

At the moment, the team is leaning towards building a safer playground so special needs kids can play safely. This would help us learn how to get a long better with all people in our school.

August 7, 2014

Welcome to Jr. Lego League Our theme relates to improving schools so that will be a fun problem to research! We will meet 2x a week.
Please go to the following website to learn about Jr. Lego League:

Last updated May 14, 2014.

Check out the opening scenes, you'll see a familiar display board and model. I think Kenzie is shown talking to some customers.

President Obama's message to the Lego Leaguers at the World Expo

We made the local newspaper again today!! Look at the Where's Herald section and you'll see the team photo Jess Witt took.

The Red Cross volunteer returned to take photos of our pillowcases and the students. She thought our photo might end up on the Red Cross website which will be updated at the end of May. She said to look for the tab Pillowcase Project. The kids had fun retelling Heather, the Red Cross volunteer, about our trip to St. Louis and our accomplishments.


Our Trophy!


Waiting for the Closing ceremony.
What a memorable experience for all involved! It would be tremendous to attend again!!

Here are some more photos from Jess W.
trophy photo.jpg
sponsor photo.jpg
cherald phots.jpg

Kurt S sent his link to many, many photos. If you need the link, contact me. He captured many of the highlights of our adventure.

What a fabulous experience. I am so proud of the third graders and so appreciative of all the help from parents! I think we pulled our grand adventure off nicely. I am posting a few photos on here now but I am looking forward to adding more as parents share them with me.
In two days we:
shared our presentation with the judges and earned an eyecatching team trophy and individual medals.
were interviewed by the president of FIRST (First in Recognition of Science and Technology).
had our interview carried live on the jumbotron screen in the St. Louis Ram's home field. We were larger than life on that screen.
visited with the men who determine what is each season's Lego League and Jr. Lego League sets contain.
conversed with the John Deere Leadership Team about Jr. Lego League and how participation increased our learning.
talked with kids from more than 20 countries.
went to the top of the St. Louis Arch.
swam in the Drury Inn pool
had a lot of fun together and supported each other.
What a tremendous adventure!

The view from the bottom of the St. Louis Arch.


Our team trophy for best designed model. Now the team should be happy that I didn't let them use directions except for the crane but, instead, asked them to think about what the item really looks like and go from there.
THe kids did such a good job when being interviewed by the President of FIRST. They answered the questions clearly and accurately. It's pretty exciting to be on the big screen larger than life. First the Disaster Masters are stars in the newspaper and now they have been on tv.

What a sea of colors. I am so glad we had bright colored shirts!!


Our award winning model and display board!
Fun group of great boys!


A closer look at the display in case we want to rebuild it.


Visiting with the Lego Education designers. These three decide which Legos go in to the JR. LL and FLL sets. If pink blocks start showing up next year, we can thank Kenzie. She was telling the Lego Ed men about the pink blocks.


We found a new friend.

We are leaving at 6:30 AM on Thursday, April 24. We'll meet in front of the elementary school. Please have your third grader bring:
1. Bring or wear his/her TEAM shirt. Bringing the shirt is probably a safer bet in case anything is spilled on the suburban ride down to St. Louis.
2. Money for lunch and snacks when we stop. We will plan to stop for lunch shortly before entering St. Louis.
3. Snacks and a water bottle for the Suburban trip to St. Louis. Please try to keep the snacks from being messy. Friday night after returning to Camanche, I will need to clean out the Suburban and I don't want to spend hours cleaning melted chocolate out of seats.
Parents can bring the kids' hotel gear, suitcases, etc in their vehicles. With 8 people and our Jr. Lego League items in the suburban we will be pretty full.


We listened to 2 presenters from the Red Cross and we learned about the Pillowcase project. The students were each given a pillowcase to decorate and keep. Please keep those in a safe place as we are having the Red Cross back in May to show them our pillowcases and tell them about our experiences in St. Louis. We will have the Red Cross speakers during the school day during my class time.


The newspaper article about the Jr. Lego Leaguers heading to the World Expo.

You can go to the link above and see our reviewing time (1-1:10) along with the activities. We'll need to get an early start if we are judged at 1:00.

I was looking over the list of what countries various teams were from. This list includes all the divisions not just Jr. Lego League:
US, Canada, Australia, Brazil, Bulgaria, Chile, China, Colombia, Denmark, Egypt, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, India, Isreal, Italy, Japan, Jordan, Lebanon, Malaysia, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand Norway, Pakistan, Peru, Phillippines, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Slovenia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Taiwan, Turkey, United Kingdom.

No wonder the hotels filled up quickly in St. Louis. There will be 10,000 young adults participating in the World Expo. Go to the link and read more about the World Expo event.

A list of which teams are attending. There are lots of teams from large cities and us.

Essential information for Jr. FLL
1. Registration is Thursday 11:00-3:00. When we arrive at the site, I will get in line to register our team. Everyone else can bgin setting up in the Pit area. Our team number is 251. Our pit will be labelled with our number.
2. Reviewing- Teams need to be ready at their pit area 5 minutes ahead of their reviewing time. Escorts will come and take us to our designed Reviewing Area. We are not to go to the reviewing area without our escort.
3. Closing Ceremony starts at 1:30 pm. The doors to the Ferrara Theatre open at 1:00 and we need to get seated shortly after that. After the closing ceremony is done we can leave for our group field trip to either the St. Louis Gateway Arch or the children's museum. If we are going to the Arch we need to reserve our tickets Thursday so we don't spend a lot of time waiting in line to ride to the top of the Arch. We should be done by 2:45-3:00.
4. Security- Leave nothing unattended.
5. Lost and Found- Bring found items to a Pit Administration area. Building personnel keep lost articles at the information desk. After the event, items go to the securty office of each building for 30 days.
6. Merchandise FIRST products will be for sale. The store is located in the America's Center Hall 2. T-shirts, sweatshirts, hats, and other logo items will be featured. Cash, checks, and major credit cards will be accepted.
7. Jr. Lego League Pit Admin is located at the entrance of the Jr. FLL Pit area. Pit Admin is your source of information and lost and found. Report any incidents and injuries to the Pit Admin when they occur.
8. There will be EMTs on site. They leave the premises at Pit closing time.
9. Pit Emergency Phone Number: These are the phone and fax numbers in the FRC Pit for emergency situations only and are operative only during Pit hours. Use the following number as an alternative emergency number in case of death, hospitalization or other such dire emergency. 314-342-5501. Specify that you are with Jr. FLL.
10. Every person in the FRC and FTC Pit area must wear safety glasses. Jr. FLL supplies each team with glasses for every team member. Team guests may borrow glasses that are located in both the FRC and FTC Pits.
11. There are representatives from many of the college and universities that offer scholarships through our FIRST Robtoics program.
12. Transportation- Most staff and many teams will rely on the metro to get around. See their website
13. Do not set up routers or networks. FRC and FTC both run fields using Wifi technology. Too much traffic makes the fields run sluggishly.

Here's a general schedule. After the closing ceremonies on Friday afternoon, I think it would be fun to take a field trip as a group to either the St. Louis Arch or the great hands on museum in St. Louis.

Here's a general schedule. We wil find time for the Jr. Lego Leaguers to see some of the Lego League robot matches (the age group we will be in next year) and the high school division perform. I hope we can also get to see some project sharing by the Lego Leaguers so our kids can see what top notch teams look like in the division we will be competing in next year. There will also be some team activities on Friday but we don't have to perform so Friday will be a more relaxing time.

The floor plans which will be useful once we know where we set up our exhibit.

The Clinton Herald is coming to interview the Jr. Lego Leaguers on Tuesday, April 8. Please have your Jr. Lego Leaguer wear their team shirt!
Here's the latest email regarding the World Expo. Some of the pages didn't open but if you are interested in discounted St. Louis Cardinal tickets, you'll want to read this. You'll probably want to skip the section on the preordered food. We will NOT be at the site by 11:00 AM to pick up the necessary bracelets.

Closer to the World Expo we can decide our plan for food. We'll need to think about lunch for the kids Thursday. We could eat before we go into the Dome or eat on site if there are options other than the preordered items. Thursday night we can have our evening meal off site. Friday breakfast will be at the hotel. Friday lunch we'll need to decide what to do. The Jr. FLL portion will be done Friday afternoon. We will definitely need to bring snacks to have available for the kids, preferably ones that aren't messy.

Jr. FLL has an online showcase. Check us out.
Our team number is 251. If anyone has a clear photo of our display board or of our model please send it/them to me. They will be useful as we rebuild our display board and as we rebuild our model. I will also be able to post them to the online showcase. I tried to keep the information posted very general and didn't identify the kids by name because the showcase is a public site.

Hotel information. This is going to be a little more complicated than I expected. We have to order through a specific website which is set up for the Lego League World Expo if you want tickets for the finale. However, if you are not staying in St. Louis Saturday, you don't need tickets for the finale so it might be easier to just call the hotel directly. I don't know if there are price differences or not. It might be worth exploring.

Here are the directions if you are going to use the website:
Go to
Select the championship icon.
Then select Make a reservation.

We are attending the championship. The Competition is Jr. FLL. The arrival date is April 24. The departure date is April 25 unless you are staying additional days of the weekend. You select what type of room you want and then click on Search. The hotel you want is the Drury Inn St. Louis Airport. This one had plenty of available roooms with 2 queen sized beds, free breakfast and light snacks available in the afternoon. It also had an indoor pool. Some of the cheaper hotels only had outdoor pools. That wouldn't be much fun for the kids. You need to reserve your room for your family. When the computer asks for your role it is registering for a family. Our team name is Camanche Team 3 Disaster Masters. I couldn't hold a block of rooms which was what I was hoping to do. So please consider that as you decide when to make your reservations.

    • One comment about the Finale party tickets. I called FIRST Lego League Monday morning to find our about the Finale tickets. They are $25 each. They are only needed for the finale event on the Saturday of the World Expo. If you aren't staying Saturday you don't need the tickets. All the events in the Edward Jones Dome are free on Thursday and Friday. So I cancelled my Finale ticket order. It sounds like it would be terrific to attend if you are staying in St. Louis for the whole weekend.
    • If you ordered the finale tickets like I did through the reservation website and decided your family will not stay Saturday night, it is really easy to call the reservation company and get a refund on the ticket prices. I did that Monday morning. Go to and call the Steele telephone number. It took me less than 5 minutes to get the charges reversed on my credit card.

Our Jr. Lego League team was chosen as the one Jr. Lego League team from Iowa to attend the World Expo this year! It is a neat opportunity. The only way they will be able to attend the World Expo as Lego Leaguers would be if they are the State Champion during a year that Iowa gets to send their championship team to the Expo. States send teams on a rotating basis. This year Iowa doesn't get to send a Lego League team. Last year Iowa did get to send a team.

Here's some information to help you decide about attending. This is an exerpt from the email I received.
Team # 251
We are thrilled to invite your team to the 2014 Jr.FLL® World Festival Expo!! This year’s Jr.FLL World Festival Expo will be two days of FIRST® fun at the Edward Jones Dome on April 24-25, 2014 in St. Louis, MO.

To make hotel reservations at the FIRST rates please go to and follow the instructions provided on the site. A map of the hotel locations is included in this packet. At that time you will have the opportunity to order tickets to the FIRST Finale at the St. Louis Science center. Tickets can only be ordered with your hotel reservations through the website above, they are not available separately online or onsite!
2014 Jr.FLL World Festival Expo Schedule
Thursday April 24, 2014
11:00am-3:00pm Jr.FLL Registration & Pits Open
1:00-5:00pm Jr.FLL Team Reviewing
5:30pm Jr.FLL Pits Close
Friday April 25, 2014
9:30am-12:00 pm Jr.FLL Team Activities
12:00-1:00pm Lunch Break
1:30-2:30pm Jr.FLL Closing Ceremony
2:30-5:00pm Jr.FLL Breakdown/Load Out

Here's another website with more information:

I am awaiting a return phone call from the individual in charge of the Jr. Lego League World Expo regarding what the Team Activities are during the Friday morning time slots and what else we do during the team reviewing on Thursday. If we are going to attend I would like our team to see the Lego Leaguers because they would all be tremendous. I'd like our kids to interact with other Jr. Lego Leaguers especially the ones from other countries. I see a lot of value in those activities. Update as of Feb. 15: The team activities for the Friday morning at the Expo haven't been deteremined yet.

I also think it would be fun to tour the St. Louis Arch and museum at the bottom of the Arch. That is downtown in the area where we would be. Marla Schultz said there is an awesome Children's Museum that our kids would probably love, also!

There are 40 Jr. Lego League teams invited. Last year 4 teams were from other countries. The remaining 36 teams were from various states in the US. There was a team present from Iowa City last year.

The Jr. Lego Leaguers would miss 2 days of school.

Mr. Gray and I thought we would handle the expenses in the same manner as the school district handled our Lego Leaguers attending State. I will drive a school suburban to St. Louis so kids whose parents didn't want to leave early Thursday morning could ride with me or ride with another family that is leaving early Thursday morning. I am guessing we'd want to be at the site by noon so we could be set up before it was time to present to the judges. Families are responsible for their own expenses including hotel, food, transportation and incidentals. The school pays the $200 registration fee.

The students and I would need to meet after school once a week until 3:45 so we could prepare for the presentation and rebuild our lego items.

Let me know what your thoughts are sometime Friday so I can plan accordingly. It probably is a once in a lifetime opportunity since it is extremely difficult to win the championship for the state of Iowa in Lego League and having to win the same year that Iowa gets to send a team. However, the kids have to miss 2 days of school and it does come with a hotel, transportation, and food cost for each family. Thanks!

This is the link to photos from the QC Regionals. There are a few photos of our team. We are easy to spot with our awesome shirts!!

We had a great first season.

The Junior Lego Leaguers did a terrific job today. They explained their project very thoroughly and answered the judges' question well. The judge who escorted them back to the parents commented on what a wonderful job the third graders did. I am so proud of them for performing so well! What an accomplishment!
Here are some photos of our big day!




I am so proud of the Jr. Lego Leaguers. They have learned a lot this season.
The exhibition date is officially set for Dec. 15 from 1:30-3:00 at the Putnam Museum in Davenport. The team leaves from the elementary school parking lot at 12:15. We will return to the elementary school parking lot at 3:45. At our exhibition, we will wear our team t-shirt which was designed by the team and paid for by Custom-Pak. I would enjoy having several chaperones on our big day. The Putnam will be very full of kids and it will be easier to keep track of the team members if there are several chaperones. I would prefer to have the team ride to the Putnam on the school bus. However, you may take your child instead of having him/her ride the school bus back to Camanche Elementary School. I will have a little form for you to sign indicating that you took your child. Chaperones can ride on the school bus with us or meet us at the Putnam. Please let me know if you will chaperone.


Here's the team! We love our team shirts! Thank you Custom-Pak for the shirts. We appreciate your support. The shirts were designed by the team.

Our team shirts are in my classroom where they will stay until closer to our Expo at the Putnam. We are wearing them for fun on Friday, Nov. 15 and for our all school sharing day on Dec. 3. A couple of days before the Expo I will give the team members their shirts so they can be worn to the Putnam on Dec. 15.

The old fashioned nails and clam shell buttons were given to the team members by Mrs. Bev Davis. She gave us a special presentation about the large tornado which hit Camanche in the 1800s. That tornado had serious consequences for our town.

Custom-Pak is a terrific supporter of Camanche's Lego League program this year! They purchased robots and paid entry fees for the middle school teams. They are providing mentors for my fourth grade team and they paid for the third grade team shirts. We greatly appreciate their support!!

We learned a lot about tornadoes from 3 special speakers recently. Mrs. Klahn told us about her experience with a tornado while she lived in Iowa City. Miss Jen was in a tornado when she resided in Indiana. She shared her scary experience. Mrs. Bev Davis shared some of her knowledge and collection of artifacts about the massive tornado which hit Camanche in the 1800's.

Here's a fun song that we may be able to use somehow. It is about tornadoes. Listen to it and see how you think we could use It's called, "Like an F6".

See the display boards and projects of Jr. Lego Leaguers form other schools from last year.

Some resources for the tornado research:

kids preparation

another resource


Please find out:
1. How are tornadoes formed?
2. What are things people can do to prepare for tornadoes?
3. What can be done to buildings to make them harder for a tornado to destroy?
4. What are important items to have in your emergency kit?
5. What agencies and groups help people recover from tornadoes?
6. What are some especially well known or powerful tornadoes?
7. What is some information about the large tornado that leveled Camanche many years ago?
8. What would be important or interesting information to put on our display board?
Write down what you have learned. We will need that information for our project.

Jr. First Lego League explains the Jr. Lego League program and this year's challenge.

Thank you to John Deere for paying our entrance fees and buying the Jr. Lego League materials. We appreciate your support.