Junior FIRST Lego League is for children ages 6-9. In the Jr. FLL challenge, teams are given a theme which they must research. Each team explores a problem related to the theme and invents a solution to address it. They also create a model using legos to help visualize the theme. Members learn problem solving and other useful skills that will help prepare them for higher levels of FIRST.
FIRST Lego League is for students in grades 4-8. The FLL challenge consists of three parts: core values, project, and the robot game. In core values teams must show judges how their team works together to manage their team and work through problems together. In the robot game, teams must build a robot to accomplish a series of tasks designed by FIRST. In the project, teams must research a problem related to the year's theme and create a solution. Members learn engineering, problem solving, and build presentation and social skills.
FIRST Tech Challenge is for students in grades 7-12. Teams construct robots to execute designated tasks and compete with three other robots on a 12' by 12' playing field. The game takes place over a two and a half minute period. During this time, the robot will move autonomously for the first thirty seconds and then is driver controlled during the last two minutes. A journal must be created to document the team's design process, and progress throughout the year. Members learn engineering, documentation, design, and presentation skills.
FIRST Robotics Competition is for students in grades 9-12. Teams engineer large robots that compete with five other robots on a field approximately the size of a tennis court. The game is released in January and teams have six weeks to construct their robot before it must be bagged until competition. Besides engineering skills, members learn design skills and mechanical safety.