Today’s post is by Team LCats, a veteran all-girls team from California, USA. 

We are the LCats team, which stands for La Crescenta Adventure Troop since we live in La Crescenta, California, USA and we are all members of a Cadettes Girl Scout troop. Girl Scouts and FIRST® LEGO® League both value learning, cooperation, and helping your community.  We hope that our videos help the international community of kids who want to learn about robot programming and design.

It was an amazing honor for our team to earn the Robot Design Award and third place overall at the 2018 FIRST LEGO League Los Angeles Region Championship tournament.  We want to show our appreciation to FIRST LEGO League and share what we have learned about LEGO® MINDSTORMS® EV3 robot programming and design with other teams. As girls entering middle school, we watch a lot of crazy YouTube videos (our parents say too many!) so we decided to share what we’ve learned by making a series of videos on own LCats YouTube channel.  

lcats-channel

It sounded like a fun adventure (and it was!) but it took all summer starting in June to complete the videos. We already had two videos that we created during the 2018 season – our presentation for judges and a 220 point Robot Game run on our practice table. We spent 5 months making 9 more videos. 

Our team member Estella’s advanced acceleration for driving and turning was our first video.  Since we were learning how to make technical videos, it took many hours-long sessions of videoing and editing to complete.  We set up a special studio and learned that making a video requires a detailed script and many takes per scene to get it just right.  And we learned about voice overlay, screen video capture, and editing with multiple audio tracks and video tracks.  We had to re-shoot two of the videos after we learned the hard way that you need good lighting to get clear videos! The videos describe how to program our most advanced and helpful MyBlocks including acceleration, PID control, straight driving, turning, line following, and the master program.  We included simpler versions of turn-in-place and line following for new teams.   We describe robot design in our 2018 presentation video and the video on jigs, frame, and side-wheels.

We didn’t know what to expect after we started posting the videos to our channel, but we were happy to see that more and more people were viewing them! Finishing the videos took us into the start of the CITY SHAPERSM season, so we stopped at 9 new videos so we could work on our Innovation Project and robot for the season. We still have some concepts that we want to share, so we’ll make more videos after our practice tournament.

We hope that many teams will benefit from our videos! Check them out on our YouTube channel – LCats FLL.

Thank you to team members Amelia, Kimberly, Estella, Lauren, Alyssa, Madeleine, and Coach Paul for these helpful resources!