Mentors and Coaches are the keystones of our programs. The descriptions below outline the definition of Coach and Mentor for each of the four FIRST programs: FIRST LEGO League Jr., FIRST LEGO League, FIRST Tech Challenge, and FIRST Robotics Competition.
Mentors play a vital role in the success of their students. Mentors work extensively with team members during the build season, designing, building, and fabricating a functional robot for Competition. Their expertise is the catalyst for the team’s and students’ success. Mentors are wholly the professional role model for the student, and they engage and inspire students in ways far beyond science and technology. They enable both students and adults to appreciate the value of sportsmanship, teamwork, and Gracious Professionalism®. Here is a video about The Satisfaction of Mentoring, from the MIT Mentorship Initiative
FIRST LEGO League Jr.
Coaches guide teams through their challenge, which includes creating a LEGO model with a motorized part and making a ‘Show Me’ poster that explains what the team learned. They keep teams on track and ask “leading questions,” but they are mainly there to make sure the children have fun.
Mentors at this level help Coaches organize events as well as find resources and events in their area.
FIRST LEGO League
A Coach provides support to their team and guides them in completing the season’s Challenge. The Coach asks questions, encourages the team to explore options, promotes teamwork and participation by all members, exemplifies Gracious Professionalism, reinforces the FIRST Core Values, and commits to having fun.
A Mentor has a certain expertise a team may need. The Mentor may contribute their expertise through instruction, guidance to the team, or serve as a resource on a one-time or multiple-time basis.
FIRST Tech Challenge and FIRST Robotics Competition
You can learn more about some of the type of mentors that support FIRST Tech Challenge and FIRST Robotics Competition right here.