Los Angeles Region FIRST® LEGO® League (LAR FLL)
Volunteer Job Descriptions
Setup/Cleanup, also known as Load-in/Load-out
Setting up and tearing down the event is a lot of work, often done when too few people are on site. You will need a large crew to help both before and after the tournament. The Event Manager or Volunteer Coordinator should assign volunteers to set up or tear down specific areas under the direction of that area's supervisor.
The judging panel should reflect a cross section of the population and be objective with all judging decisions. These men and women serve as role models to the participants through their actions and frequent interactions during the event, most significantly during the team presentations. Their interaction should be positive and informative, modeling FLL® Core Values and Gracious Professionalism®.
The Judge Advisor should recruit and train judges prior to the day of the event and facilitate the judging deliberation process. Larger events should consider adding Head Judges to oversee one aspect of FLL judging – Robot Design, Project or Core Values. The Head Judge’s role is to organize and aid their subset of judges, and to assist with awards deliberation. The Judge Advisor recruits and trains the Head Judges.
Judges should commit to the entire day of the tournament, starting with the morning orientation through the awards ceremony, as well as judges’ training and review of judging material prior to the event. FLL provides a Judges’ Handbook each year with the current judging standards and awards explained.
Robot Design judges should have some programming and design experience. Project judges should have some background in the science or technology behind the Challenge theme. Ideally, one or both Project judges on each team should have a science background related to the Challenge. Executives, managers and professionals who have experience working with teams make great Core Values judges.
Individuals assigned to the registration table will assist participants with the registration process, collect consent forms, team information pages and tournament fees (if due), and distribute registration packets. They can rotate to be “floaters” following the close of registration which occurs usually after the Opening Ceremony, or can handle the sales of merchandise if the registration table is converted to this purpose.
The information table should have tournament programs, schedules and maps available for spectators. You may also use this area as a check-in table for VIPs and the media. These volunteers are the official greeters and should be able to answer questions about the site layout, schedule of the day and FLL. Be sure that these volunteers also have information on emergency or medical procedures.
Stock this table with literature about FLL and, optionally, a TV continuously playing an FLL DVD. Since this table will remain set up and staffed all day, use it for lost and found and as a central message center.
Pit/Queuing Area Crew
The Pit and queuing areas are hubs for significant activity during the tournament day. Volunteers working in these areas are largely responsible for keeping the day on schedule. In addition, security is a key component in the Pit since there is a lot of valuable equipment left at the Pit tables while teams are in the competition area. Remind teams that someone should stay behind at their pit table when the team is away.
• Oversees the general organization of the Pit
• Staffs the Pit administration table
• Assigns responsibilities to the Pit crew
• Announces which teams are required to be in the queuing area, ready for their next matches
• Uses a radio or walkie-talkie to communicate with the competition area and team queuer to coordinate the efficient flow of teams to and from the competition fields
• Assists the Pit Announcer with finding teams for queuing
• Escorts teams from the Pit to the queuing area
• Uses a radio or walkie-talkie to communicate with the Pit announcer
• Keeps close track of which teams are on the playing field, guides the teams on deck, and directs them to the appropriate playing field
• Maintains a smooth traffic flow between the playing fields and the Pit
Practice Table Monitors
• Enforces the policy of “first come, first served”, the practice table schedule or the times teams have signed up to use the practice field
• Clocks and enforces the time allowance regarding all practice fields throughout the day
• Keeps track of the order of waiting teams, using a waiting list if necessary
• Two extra volunteers are needed from the time teams arrive until fifteen (15) minutes prior to the Opening Ceremony, if teams are permitted practice time on the competition playing fields. Some tournaments have one Practice Table Manager and Practice Table Assistants for each practice field
Team Escorts (optional)
• Escort teams to their scheduled judging sessions, practice and performance rounds and must be familiar with the site layout
• Is responsible for the competition playing fields
• Ensures proper team flow, on and off the field
• Supervises field attendants, team queuers, scorers and coordination with Head Referee and referees
• Maintains the schedule in conjunction with the Event Manager
Field Reset Crew/Field Attendants
• Resets the competition tables
• Moves teams and robots quickly on and off the competition playing fields
Emcee/Master of Ceremonies/Play-by-Play Announcer(s)
This person is the visible, audible host for the event and should speak well, be enthusiastic, and have knowledge about FIRST LEGO League and the season’s Challenge and its rules. Someone with a public speaking, performing or broadcasting background is ideal. He or she introduces teams, announces the scores, provides the play-by-play commentary to complement the projected video images and often leads the opening and closing ceremonies.
The Emcee works with the Event Manager and Technical Director to provide a polished professional event. The Event Manager should provide the Emcee with the competition schedule and team information sheets as well as opening and closing/awards ceremony scripts if applicable.
• Introduces each team during the set-up time between matches.
• Announces the scores (during down time between matches, if the Scorekeeper has completed the scoring).
• Uses team information sheets to report interesting and entertaining team information.
• Provides play-by-play descriptions of action on the playing field to complement the projected video image.
• Makes periodic announcements concerning the event or agenda updates.
• Leads the opening and closing ceremonies.
This individual enters the scores into the computer from the referees’ score sheets after each match. Some tournaments use score runners who pass the completed scoring sheets from the referees to the scorekeepers. The scoring software, timekeeper or an extra volunteer should verify the scorekeeper's work. After all three rounds of competition, the scorer ranks the teams using the performance ranking spreadsheet/software. The scorekeeper provides the ranking list to the Event Manager or Head Judge Advisor.
The scorekeeper may also enter the scores from the judging rubric scoresheets.
The Head Referee recruits and trains referees for the tournament. Referees must be trained in advance of the event and should perform quality assurance on the Field Setup Kits prior to load-in. One referee is assigned to each playing field. There are two playing fields per competition table. Referees should commit to the full tournament day including the closing ceremony as well as training prior to the event.
• Carefully watches the actions of one team and robot during each round at their table
• Applies the rules consistently and accurately
• Records scores on Scoring Sheets, confirms the score sheet with the team and brings the sheets to the scorekeeper after each match or hands them to the score runner
It is essential that referees be familiar with the Challenge, rules, Q&A on the FLL website, the FLL Referee Guide and all possible scoring scenarios. The Head Referee will confer with other referees in the event of a scoring dispute and will be responsible for the final decision. (See Referee Guide.)
Depending on the tournament layout, it is often beneficial to have a scoresheet runner expedite the scoring process by conveying the scoresheets from the referees to the scorekeepers.
A scoresheet runner may also convey the rubric scoresheets from the judges to the scorekeepers.
Coordinating with the Emcee/Master of Ceremonies, the timekeeper:
• Operates the clock from the scoring table or at a separate location.
• Resets the clock for each match.
• Activates the buzzer at the close of each match.
• Serves as the Scorekeeper’s Assistant if needed and accessible.
• Plays high-energy, age-appropriate music throughout the tournament.
• Monitors the energy of the crowd, raising crowd enthusiasm with musical selections.
• Works with the Emcee and Technical Director to coordinate music and score announcements.
• Brings an appropriate recording of the national anthem for each participating country and plays them during the Opening Ceremony if a live performance is not used.
Crowd/Traffic Control & Security
Plan to have at least eight volunteers to help in various areas. Security is necessary to oversee personal belongings and electronics in the Pit and judges’ area. Use traffic controllers to keep attendees from crowding or entering certain areas, in the competition area and to keep aisles and walkways clear.
Areas needing extensive traffic control coverage are:
• Scoring table
• Queuing path – from the Pit to competition playing fields
• Access to the stage area, Pit, or playing fields
• Entrance to the playing fields
• Entry areas for the tournament and the Pit Area
• Entry and exit from the Judging Areas
• Emergency exits – keeping them clear
Medallion Award Presenters
These volunteers count and lay out medallions based on the number of team members listed on the registration forms. Following the third round, at the Closing Ceremony or at the FLL Partner’s discretion, they assist the VIP(s), judges and/or referees in presenting medallions to team members.
It is important to have extra volunteers on hand for needed coverage in registration or traffic control or as runners for the Judge Advisor, team queuer, and referees. These volunteers can also be reassigned if another volunteer does not show up, or needs to leave due to an emergency or illness.
This person captures the tournament on film and/or video for future publicity, the region’s website and the program’s archives.
• Monitor and maintain team traffic flow through the judging areas.
• Assist the Judge Advisor to keep the judges on schedule.
• Gather necessary information and supplies for the judges, as required.
Videographer and Cable-Puller
Operates hand-held cameras for projection of the competition rounds. (One videographer and one cable-puller per camera.)
Sound Board Operator
Operates the sound board in the competition area.
Operates the video switcher, selecting camera, score or computer images for projection. (Can be eliminated with use of a scan converter operated by the scorer or another volunteer.)
Light Board Operator
Operates light board in competition area.