2002 FIRST LEGO League Pages


Upper Peninsula FIRST LEGO
League Regional 2003

More than 200 students from 22 teams across the Upper Peninsula participated in "U.P. Martian Mayhem," robotics competition on Saturday November 22, 2003 at Northern Michigan University's Vandament Arena.

The regional event is affiliated with First Lego League International, a program for 9- to 14-year-olds that combines hands-on, interactive robotics with a sports-like atmosphere. The goal is to promote team building, problem solving, creativity and analytical thinking. FLL issues a challenge each September.

This year's theme is "Mission Mars." Teams of up to 10 players had a maximum of eight weeks to strategize, design, build, program, test and refine a fully autonomous robot capable of completing various missions using Lego Mindstorms? technology. Some of the missions include knocking a rover off its perch, retrieving a habitation module, and wiping dust off a solar panel. Each mission is assigned a number of points.

Teams compete in the robotics challenge and try to complete as many missions as possible in three minutes. Teams are also judged on the following: robot building and programming skills; teamwork; and a research project they present based on an FLL International assignment relating to a problem or opportunity facing the world today.

Six teams with highest overall scores from the Upper Peninsula Regional advance to state tournament at the Novi Expo Center on Saturday December 6, 2003. Seven teams from the local schools participated in the UP Regional: Hancock Elementary, Hancock Middle School, Houghton Elementary, Houghton Middle School, Lake Linden Middle School, Dollar Bay Elementary and Ironwood Middle School.

Hancock Elementary Michiganian Martians and the Ironwood Middle School Mindbuilders will advance to the State Tournament in Novi. Hancock Elementary Michiganian Martians are coached by Susan Amato-Henderson, Brent Esch and Jana Tyler and Thermoanalytics provided the team T- shirts.

Michiganian Martians team consisted of 4th and 5th grade students; Samantha Henderson, Kyle Kearly, Shelby Hill, Derek Pierce, Ruth Oppliger, Emily Oppliger, Danielle Langdon, Kalle Markkanen, Elliot Meese, James Peck.

Ironwood Middle School Mindbuilders are coached by Carol and Tom Herfort. Mindbuilders team consisted of 6th-8th grade students;

More information about Michigan FIRST LEGO League and the state tournament can be found at

Shawn Oppliger, Director Western UP Center for Science, Mathematics and Environmental Education
Tel: 906-482-0331



Contact the WUP Center

Last Update: 11/26/03
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