LEGO Inspiration: Duplo Motorized Train

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In LEGO Inspiration today, we will show you what we found interesting in the current LEGO DUPLO train sets.

Even though these LEGO DUPLO sets are “geared” (haha) more for ages 2-5, these trains have features that help the next generation to learn about robotics. We really like that sets like these help kids (that might not even be old enough yet for FIRST LEGO League) to consider different ways to use “blocks” to tell a robot what to do, as well as learn about sensors. Maybe these sets will get all kids, girls and boys, interested in robotics!

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Have Fun With Your EV3 and Power Functions

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While we were creating our project prototype out of LEGOs, we found awesome aftermarket equipment from a company called Mindsensors that allows an EV3 to be able to talk to a Power Functions IR Receiver, enabling an EV3 to control LEGO Power Functions! Power Functions is a sub-section of LEGO that is mostly used in older motorized LEGO Technic sets, LEGO train sets, and the original WeDo. LEGO Power Functions included motors of different sizes, as well as lights. The Mindsensors’ PFMate controller can hook up to an EV3 with just a regular EV3 wire! Mindsensors also has a downloadable EV3 block already available! These Mindsensors after-market components are not made by LEGO, though, so they cannot be used as part of the FIRST LEGO League robot game (actually, even the Power Functions elements are excluded from the robot game). However, they might help you with developing a project prototype (how we discovered them) or you may just want to use them for fun with your EV3! In this article, we will show you how this interesting after-market component is used.

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LEGO Inspiration: 41194 Noctura’s Tower & the Earth Fox Rescue

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In LEGO Inspiration today, we will show you what we found interesting in LEGO Elves set number 41194 Noctura’s Tower & the Earth Fox Rescue.

This is one of the medium-sized LEGO Elves sets, but even though it’s “geared” (haha) more for girls it has a lot of important things to consider using in your FLL attachments or robot. We really like that sets like these help kids (that might not even be old enough yet for FLL) to consider different ways to have gears, chains, rotating beams, and other moving parts bring function to their play sets. Maybe these sets will get all kids, girls and boys, interested in robotics!

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#FIRSTLikeAGirl Women in STEM Build Event

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Some of our team had the awesome opportunity to attend the Houston area #FIRSTLikeAGirl Women in STEM Build Event at Space Center Houston today. We had some great talks about what it means to be allies for each other in STEM. We also had fun helping to encourage all the rookie FIRST girls as they start their own great robotics journeys with their teams. It was also great to be inspired by FIRST teams older than us, as well as females in engineering.

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Gears: Types of Gears

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Gears are everywhere, from seemingly simple toys to as complex things as cars. We think that it is amazing that LEGO Technic has incorporated so many gears into their sets to create functioning machines or robots to be used in FLL (FIRST LEGO League). In addition, many other LEGO themes such as City and Friends have used gears for many of their special functions. In this article, we will show you the types of gears as well as their uses.

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LEGO Inspiration: 42062 Container Yard Part 2

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In LEGO Inspiration today, we will continue showing you what we found interesting in LEGO Technic set number 42062 Container Yard.

This is one of the medium-sized LEGO Technic sets, but even though it’s small it has lots of cool gearing and use of connectors. It is a 2-in-1 set, so it also has available instructions to build a container straddle-carrier, but for this article we will deal with the main instructions for the 2 container yard vehicles. Of these two vehicles, we will focus on the blue and white one in this article as “part 2” about this set (see “part 1” for orange vehicle).

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LEGO Inspiration: 42062 Container Yard Part 1

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In LEGO Inspiration today, we will show you what we found interesting in LEGO Technic set number 42062 Container Yard.

This is one of the medium-sized LEGO Technic sets, but even though it’s small it has lots of cool gearing and use of connecters. It is a 2-in-1 set, so it also has available instructions to build a container straddle-carrier, but for this article we will deal with the main instructions for the 2 container yard vehicles. Of these two vehicles, we will focus on the orange one in this article as “part 1” about this set. We have found many neat and inspiring things about this vehicle.

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City Shaper Release and Upcoming Video

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We are really excited for the 2019-2020 season in FIRST LEGO League! The theme this year is City Shaper! FIRST LEGO League (FLL) is such a great program for kids ages 9-14 years old (age restrictions are different in other parts of the world, so check for your region). Get involved if you can as a team member or coach! Even if you do not have time to be fully involved, you can still volunteer or attend the many tournaments across the world!!!

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Core Values at the Tournament

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When we went to the FIRST LEGO League regional championship tournament in our area, we were impressed by all of the examples of Core Values that we saw from the teams! The FIRST Core Values are a list of guidelines of how teams should act. They promote teamwork and “Coopertition” both within and between teams, as well as encouraging everyone to always treat others with “Gracious Professionalism.” This year FIRST made a list of consolidated Core Values across its different levels. In today’s article, we would like to share with you some examples of these Core Values being displayed at our tournament.

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