The Junior FIRST LEGO League is the newest addition to the US FIRST family of robotics programs. Consequently, there are fewer materials out there to support the teams. The good news is that the program is a lot simpler than FLL or FRC. To become acquainted with the program, check out the JrFLL site. It offers most everything you need to know. There are also some good tips on how to get started at LEGO Education.
After you launch a team, the greatest challenge for a JrFLL coach is planning an interesting program. The JrFLL challenge is modest; it just asks the kids to build a model and create a short presentation on the year's topic.
We've found that these activities do not keep the kids invested for a whole semester. So, we create a broader curriculum. We focus on two areas each year - simple engineering and the year's topic. There are so many great resources for teaching small kids about engineering. You'll find a list of some of our favorite books listed in the panel to the right.
We also develop a twelve-week lesson plan on the annual topic. For example, for Smart Moves, we developed a plan that covered the various modes of transportation available today, innovations that are in the pipeline, the energy used for these modes, etc. Then, we took the kids on field trips to see how some of their favorite products (milk and marbles were a big hit) traveled through the distribution pipeline.
For resources on current and past FLL topics, check out our other Resource lists. We hope they will help you develop a great lesson plan for your kids!