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FLL 101: Adult Roles in FIRST LEGO League Teams

Updated: Apr 22

FLL Team

Starting a new FIRST LEGO League team is an exciting endeavor that requires a dedicated team of adults to support and guide the young participants. Here's a breakdown of the different adult roles, the expertise needed, and the time commitment required:

Head Coach:

  • Role: The Head Coach is responsible for overall team management, including coordinating meetings, overseeing team progress, and ensuring adherence to competition rules.

  • Expertise: Strong organizational and leadership skills, knowledge of FIRST LEGO League rules and requirements, and the ability to motivate and inspire team members.

  • Time Commitment: Typically, the Head Coach should be available for weekly team meetings (1-2 hours) and additional time for planning and communication (2-3 hours per week).

Assistant Coach(es):

  • Role: Assistant Coaches support the Head Coach in various tasks, such as leading sub-teams, providing technical expertise, and assisting with administrative duties.

  • Expertise: Similar to the Head Coach, Assistant Coaches should have a good understanding of FIRST LEGO League, along with specific skills related to their assigned tasks (e.g., programming, research).

  • Time Commitment: Assistant Coaches should be available for regular team meetings and additional time as needed based on their specific roles (1-2 hours per week).

Given that the FLL Challenge includes the Innovation Project, which demands its own time commitment, it's advisable for one of the coaches to take the lead and guide the team in this aspect.


  • Role: Mentors provide specialized guidance and expertise in specific areas, such as programming, engineering, or research. They work closely with team members to develop their skills and knowledge.

  • Expertise: Mentors should have relevant experience and expertise in their respective fields, along with a passion for working with young learners.

  • Time Commitment: Mentors typically commit to regular meetings with the team to provide guidance and support (1-2 hours per week), with additional time for preparation and communication.

Parent(s) or Guardian(s):

  • Role: Parents or guardians play a crucial role in supporting their child's participation, including providing transportation, assisting with fundraising efforts, encouraging their child's involvement, and providing swag for tournaments and events.

  • Expertise: While no specific expertise is required, parents should be supportive of the team's goals and willing to contribute time and resources as needed.

  • Time Commitment: Parents should be prepared to assist with transportation to and from meetings and events, attend parent meetings (if required), help with fundraising and other team activities, and provide swag for tournaments and events (1-2 hours per week).

Volunteer Coordinator:

  • Role: The Volunteer Coordinator is responsible for recruiting and coordinating volunteers to support team activities and events.

  • Expertise: Strong organizational and communication skills, along with the ability to work effectively with volunteers of all ages.

  • Time Commitment: The Volunteer Coordinator should be available to recruit and coordinate volunteers for team meetings, events, and competitions (2-3 hours per week).

For new teams, it is recommended to have a Head Coach, at least one Assistant Coach, and one or two Mentors (or mentor teams) to provide the necessary support and guidance. The time commitment for each role can vary based on the team's needs and the availability of the adults involved. However, a minimum time commitment of 5-6 hours per week is generally recommended to ensure the team's success and smooth operation.

NOTE: As tournament dates approach, the time commitment tends to increase. Many teams dedicate both weekend days perfecting their robots as the competition draws near.

Additionally, it's important for adults involved with the team to communicate regularly and work together to provide a positive and supportive environment for the young participants. By working as a team, adults help create a rewarding experience for everyone involved in the FIRST LEGO League program.

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