This fall, i.am.angel Foundation, LA’s BEST and the LEGO Education are partnering up to expand the FIRST LEGO League robotics program in Boyle Heights, east Los Angeles.
With i.am.angel providing financial support to new teams, LEGO Education donating two hundred LEGO kits, and LA’s BEST providing training for staff to become robotics coaches, this initiative will introduce competitive robotics to students at 6 LAUSD elementary schools: First Street Elementary, Second Street Elementary, Bridge Street Elementary, Euclid Avenue Elementary, Sheridan Street Elementary and Sunrise Elementary.
FIRST LEGO League is a competitive robotics program for elementary and middle school students, where teams build sophisticated robots with LEGO Mindstorms kits.
In 2015, i.am.angel Foundation started and funded ten FIRST LEGO League (FLL) teams in Boyle Heights, essentially starting enough teams to form its own small league in one year. It was an unprecedented feat for an organization in the FIRST community.
LA’s BEST is an after-school education, enrichment & recreation program serving over 25,000 elementary school children in Los Angeles. It’s the official after-school program for Los Angeles’ public elementary schools, with a focus on serving low-income neighborhoods.
One of its sites, Sunrise Elementary, served as one of the inaugural i.am FIRST LEGO League teams in 2015. Seeing the fantastic performance of this pilot team at a local robotics competition, LA’s BEST was eager to replicate the model and roll out more teams in Boyle Heights, with the support of the i.am.angel Foundation.
At LA’s BEST recent annual gala, both will.i.am and the LEGO Education were honored for their contributions to STEM education. For the event, LEGO even made an exclusive will.i.am LEGO minifigure, which is an extremely rare honor!
We’re super excited to partner with LA’s BEST and LEGO Education this year to give hundreds more students access to fun and compelling robotics programs, and can’t wait to share the results.