First Lego League (FLL) is a popular competition for children in the range of 10 to 16 years. It helps not only to build programming and construction skills but also to develop skills to work on a research topic & team work. SAP is globally supporting the following initiative. In Bulgaria for 4 years in a row one of the teams (KASAPIN40) with SAP Employees mentors were winning the local and several regional competitions. However, we all identified that this is not helping the rest of the students that are not involved to stay motivated, and learn. That is why we decided to change our focus and strategy. For the last competition the SAP mentors and ex-KASAPIN40 team members are supporting the community to build the knowledge and skills across the whole country.
In September 2015 we started a project to find motivated school teachers who would like to setup a local team which is eager to get training and 1 Lego Mindstorms set. We’ve received many applications and at the end we have 17 pairs of teachers, from 11 cities around the country that formed teams from 4 to 10 members. That was the way for us to reach more than 150 students. Teachers received in-person training in November and recently they have worked with the teams for 6 months from December to May 2016 on step by step approach with additional feedback and recommendations. Not only most of them did well but few additional schools asked to join with their own financing.
The culmination for this year is the Festival we are organizing on SAP premises in Sofia on 18th June. All the teams will show what they have learned and how well they managed with the challenges. A lot of the colleagues will help during that Saturday to ensure the Festival is a place where skills, knowledge and team work will show the best of these smart children and how much they learned and grew in that program.