Coaches Corner

Coaching robotics, whether it is FLL Jr or FLL, is a LOT of fun.  Approached with the right perspective, it will also likely be very fulfilling ("its not about what the kids win, it's what they learn").

If you are contemplating being a coach, please let us know so that we can get you more information.  You can enter your information here.

For those of you who are already coaches, this page is meant for YOU.  It is meant to be a handy source of best practices, policies, and helpful tips.   

Further down is general information for FLL Jr and FLL coaching.  Please continue on to the program specific pages by clicking on one of the buttons immediately below for more guidance.  If you have more materials for us to share here, please let your Moorestown Robotics contacts know.


General (non-program specific) information:

What administrative items Moorestown Robotics will handle for you during the season

 JR  FLL  What   When Details      Why
  ✔  ✔ Manage Child Registration process Mid May  We use a centralized sign up.  
 ✔  ✔ Creating all team with FIRST Late June    
 ✔  ✔ Entering coaches into system Late June    
 ✔  ✔ General message notifying kids that teams have been picked Late June    
 ✔  ✔ Pay FIRST for team registration and buy LEGO kits Mid July MR can do this after background checks complete MR uses the dues to pay for this. 
 ✔  ✔ Distribute LEGOs/challenge materials to teams Early-Mid August Depends on when background checks complete and when FIRST ships the materials The club owns the LEGOs. 
 ✔  ✔ Collect money from parents for kids on teams  July Aug 15th is cut off for receiving. Refunds given until Sept 15th.   
 ✔  ✔ Hold kick off party Mid Sept    
 ✔  ✔ Register/pay for teams with Rowan October There is a chance that the lead coach will have to register for the competition. TBD.  MR uses the dues to pay for this. 
 ✔  ✔ Order team designed t-shirts October Early in the month, teams design their shirts  MR uses the dues to pay for this. 
   ✔ If applicable, register/pay for championships January   MR uses the dues to pay for this. 
 ✔  ✔ Hold end of year party February (timing is dependent on availability of venue)  

What administrative items you, as a coach, need to take care of:

 JR  FLL  What  When  Details    Why
 ✔  ✔ Sign up with MR to be a coach.  Late May    
 ✔  ✔ Decide on a consistent meeting time/location  Mid June You will need a consistent time when both you and your co-coach can meet so that you can decide which kids can be on your team.  Consistent times allow parents to ensure their kids are able to attend. 
 ✔  ✔ Work with MR to pick your team members  Late June   
 ✔  ✔ Notifying parents that kids are on YOUR team, you and you co-coaches info, and meeting time/location  Early to  Mid July   Share meeting location, coaches names and contact information.  
 ✔  ✔ Register yourself in FIRST's system  Late June  You will receive an email invite from FIRST, after MR registers your team  You will manage your team details once it is set up.
 ✔  ✔ Initiate background check  Late June  BOTH coaches need to pass background checks before MR can officially complete signing your team up for the season  Youth Protection
 ✔  ✔ Start holding meetings  Aug/Early Sept -   FLL seasons can start as soon as Aug 1.  In reality, all teams should be operational by the first full week in September. FLL Jr meetings should begin by mid-Sept.  
 ✔  ✔ Communicate regularly with parents  Aug -   Levels of communication varies by team, but we found it's helpful for JR to have weekly recaps for parents  
 ✔  ✔ Have parents sign FIRST Waivers  Before Sept 15  You will need to track that you have one for each coach and child. A waiver for MR should have been given at the time the kids paid. This is different.  These are needed to go to an expo/competition.
 ✔  ✔ Hold recurring meetings  Sept -  Jr meets 12-15x between the start of the school year and the date of the expo.
FLL typically meets for at leas 2 hours 1x a week until late in the season.
 ✔  ✔ Rank preferred qualifier dates/locations  Mid-Sept (Estimate)  Rowan will publicize when qualifiers will be held and ask us to sign up.    MR will facilitate the sign up with Rowan and we will need to know your choice.   JR will have a choice of 2 dates.
 ✔  ✔ Design T-Shirts  Early-Oct(Estimate)  Your team needs to design a shirt on designated website.    MR will designate a website, guidelines, and due date  
 ✔  ✔ Prepare for Expo/Qualifier   Ensure your team has met everything that needs to be done for the expo/qualifier
JR: Show me poster, model, t-shirts
FLL: robot, robot design prep, core values poster, project presentation.
 ✔  ✔ Confirm paperwork in place for Expo/Qualifier    You will need a print out of the team roster, confirmation of payment (by MR) and FIRST waivers  Without these, your team can't participate
 ✔  ✔  Lead team at Expo/Qualifier Expo / Qualifier day    
 ✔  ✔  Return equipment if not continuing on next year  End of Season  If coaching again next year, you can hold on to the supplies  

Expense Policy

Coaches are allowed to expense items, up to a limited dollar amount (program and year specific), that are used for the benefit of the team and their presentations at the expo/competitions.  Expenses are submitted electronically to our treasurer and must contain all receipts and copy of pre-approvals (if applicable).

Items typically Expensible
  • Materials used for presentations (such as tri-fold, print out of photos, lettering, etc)
  • Printing of boards for sharing
  • Other printing supplies or binding
  • Trinkets for sharing with other teams
  • Limited spare Lego parts (must be pre-approved)
  • T-shirts - if not using our standard process (must be pre-approved)
    Please note that there is a total dollar cap per team.  

Items typically NOT Expensible
  • Snacks
  • Meals
  • Fancy t-shirts or uniforms over the standard budget
  • Items meant to be kept by the team after the season is done, unless it relates to a non-LEGO item in the expensible list.
When filing expenses, please fill out the an expense form (link), save it with your name in it, and then reach out to Chris (FLL/FLL JR) or Harry (FLL) or Melissa (FLL JR) for approval.  Upon approval, we will then tell you where to email it.