RM BEST Teacher / Mentor Newsletter 7
2019 OFF THE GRID Game
almost September 2019
Greetings Teachers and Mentors,
We are looking forward to seeing you and your students at our 2019 Kickoff Event on Saturday -14 September.

STRIVE Prep - RISE School
18250 E 51st Ave, Denver, CO 80249
(REGIS GROFF CAMPUS Southwest of 51st Ave & Tower Rd)

2019 BEST Logo
Kickoff Preparations
Included in this email:. 
  • Kickoff Agenda - Current Draft - minor changes may occur.
  • Kickoff Procedures-Kickoff Preparation and the day of Kickoff Directions.
  • Rocky Mountain BEST Robotics Schools -We currently have 29 schools registered and are excited to see you and your students at Kickoff.
  • Looking Forward to Practice and Game Day -Reminder of dates and preparation. Also includes optional BEST Award dates.
We will reveal the 2019 OFF THE GRID Game Field and Rules. We loan / give you your Robot Kit and we provide Training Sessions for Students, Teachers, and Mentors.
2016 Kickoff Gym  Stevens Crop Low
Looking Ahead to Kickoff
Pre-Kickoff Procedures
  1. Free Software: The software access instructions for each team was sent to the teachers / mentors registered on Eventbrite. Please contact Lois Walton  Lois.Walton@bestinc.org  if you have questions.
  2. Training Session Planning*: (Reference Agenda above) After the Kickoff introduction and revelation of the game there will be an hour of breakout training sessions. You will be given the listed tickets for attendees for each of the sessions with Robot Design & Construction Tips session in the gym having no limit to participation and thus no tickets also no tickets for Robot Kit & Rules.  To help you plan who will attend the training sessions, we created an overview description of each training session and provide this optional training session planning sheet for you to organize your team. Here is a link to Training session location map to find your way around the school and pasted below.   
  3. bESTology Link: bESTology is a resource for schools (teams) participating in the nationwide BEST Robotics Program to learn educational and workforce development concepts revolving around the OFF THE GRID game.  
  4. Student Laptops Software Install - It is highly encouraged to have any students attending the easyC and SIMULINK (pending SIMULINK instructor availability) training classes to bring a WINDOWS PC laptop with the applicable software loaded. Use your software access instructions for links to access the software. If you are having issues, please reply to this email.  Additional easyCV6 Install Instructions 
  5. NEW BEST National Registration tool will use the Eventbrite registered teacher contact information in early September to contact the teacher with their registration and instructions on how to use the tool in early September. Use of the BEST National Registry will be required for all participants (students, teachers, mentors) and must be completed PRIOR to competing on Game Day. Teachers / Mentors can check their Team's registration status within the National Registry Tool. Parents SHOULD register students in the tool. Our prior years RM BEST Hub Consent and Release forms (Liability and photo release waivers) are expected to be provided through this system. Team Demographics information previously collected by teachers/mentors is expected to be collected via this system.
  6. Kit Pickup Form - Teachers and Mentors need to print and sign this 2019 Returnable Kit Agreement form to accept responsibility for the loaned Red Returnable Kit (electronics equipment ~$1000 value) through Game Day. This form is turned in at the Rental Truck at the School's north end parking lot with early pickup from 12 - 12:45 PM and regular pickup from 2 - 4 PM. At Game Day, you may request a few months longer loan with a new form.
Kickoff Procedures  
  1. Directions: Kickoff is on Saturday 14 September at STRIVE Prep - RISE located at  18250 E 51st Ave, Denver, CO 80249 . In 2018, some had difficulty finding the school with address and GPS. It is at the southwest corner of 51st Ave and Tower Road. Map above and please click here for map file.  
  2. Teacher / Mentor MUST Participate - HIGHLY recommend Students Participate: The Kickoff presentation starts promptly at 1:00 PM for students and teachers/mentors. Teachers/mentors need to arrive at 12:00 PM to register their teams. A teacher/mentor MUST attend Kickoff unless you have made prior arrangements. Please reply to this email by 10 September if you need to make other arrangements. 
  3.  Respecting School Property: Food and drink are only allowed outdoors and in the Cafeteria with water bottles with lid allowed outside of these areas.
  4. Cafeteria Gathering Place: Prior to the start of the event, the cafeteria will be available to gather your team and also the place to bring food and eat. We will open the GYM door around 12:50 PM.
  5. Food Available:  A Food Truck will be available from ~11 AM - 1 PM to purchase food and drink.  Also STRIVE Prep - RISE speech and debate team students are being contacted to sell snacks/drinks during this time.
  6. Lobby Teacher / Mentor Registration: Teachers / Mentors will receive a packet of information when they arrive. Flash Drives of presentations are included and paper items include: Team's breakout session tickets and planner, survey, teacher name tags, RM BEST Contact Information, and Kickoff Event programs. NOTE: Signed 2019 Returnable Kit Agreement Forms are turned in at at the RENTAL TRUCK in the parking lot.
  7. Parking Lot Kit Pickup: Kits are picked up from a RENTAL TRUCK in the north end of the school parking lot. You MUST turn in your signed 2019 Returnable Kit Agreement Forms at the truck -- not registration. Do not forget to obtain your Consumable and Returnable Kit tote boxes and raw materials BEFORE you leave the school at the conclusion of Kickoff.
  8. Kit Transportation: Since you will be issued the materials and electronics for your robot at Kickoff, you'll need to bring a vehicle capable of carrying two totes (Blue Consumable Tote: 27" X 17" X 13"; Red Returnable Tote: 15" X 11" X 9"), 2- 2'x4' plywood sheets and 5' long PVC pipes. We recommend a pick-up or an SUV/van with fold down seats.
  9. Google Drive Instructions:  Within a week after Kickoff, the team's Eventbrite teacher or mentor will receive an email via Google Drive with an invitation to share their school's Google Drive folder. Click this link for Google Drive instructions. Teams must post their Engineering Notebook pdf file (ONE FILE) to their 2019 Google Drive folder by 9 AM on 19 October - Practice Day.
  10. Training Material:  All of the training presentations will be posted on the 2019 Competition Page Link on our website after Kickoff. We will also provide a thumb drive with all relevant files in the teacher packet at Kickoff, including all breakout session training presentations. 
  11. Help Wanted: We will provide you a paper, EXIT SURVEY at registration that we would very much appreciate you completing prior to leaving the school - turn in at Front Door registration table or Kit Pickup when leaving. Also at the bottom of the survey, we would like to collect from experienced students and teachers a few sentences of positive testimonials about prior BEST experiences. We would use the testimonials in presentations and promotions for RM BEST. Or email to Lois.Walton@bestinc.org.
We're Excited to have you in the 10th Rocky Mountain BEST Robotics Competition
Kickoff Team List
Practice Day in 5 Weeks & Game Day in 6 Weeks
Help Your Students Manage Their Time to Be Successful

BEST Award (Optional Participation) Dates - you MUST signup for both to compete:
  • Starting 16 Sept at noon each BEST Award team must sign up for a Marketing Presentation time slot on 19 October. https://signup.com/go/FzYtUSr Last day to select your Marketing Presentation time slot from remaining slots is 30 September midnight.
  • Starting 16 Sept at noon each BEST Award team must sign up for an Exhibit and Interviews time slot on 26 October. https://signup.com/go/FVqbfGH  Last day to select your Exhibit and Interviews time slot from remaining slots is 30 September midnight. Optional exhibit setup time at 7 PM on Friday, 25 October. 
Practice Day (9 AM - 3 PM) Saturday, 19 October at STRIVE Prep - RISE
  • Practice Approach - open morning practice time on game field after robot compliance check AND structured 3 minutes practice rounds in the afternoon. 
  • BRING YOUR ROBOT - working OR NOT! We will have technical volunteers to help you.
  • A single Engineering Notebook pdf file must be uploaded to Team's Google Drive folder by 9 AM 
  • BEST Award Teams Marketing Presentation Judging (see above for directions to select a 30 minute time slot between 9 AM - 5 PM if interested in this OPTIONAL competition. (subject to change)).
Game Day (7:30 AM - 5 PM) Saturday, 26 October at the Auraria Campus Events Center (aka Gym) in downtown Denver.
  • 7:30 AM Registration and Robot Compliance Check starts
  • Competition 10:00 AM - 4:30 PM
  • Optional BEST Award Team Exhibit and Interviews - setup 7:30 AM - 9:00 AM and Judging 9:00 AM - 2:00 PM (subject to change) (see above for directions to select a time slot if interested in this OPTIONAL competition.)
  • Awards Presentation 4:30 PM - 5:00 PM
Denver BEST Regional Championship
Denver BEST Regional Championship for qualifying Schools will be held on 7 and 8 December at Crowne Plaza Denver Airport Event Center near Chambers Road and I70.

Teacher Mentor Help Needed
Please Reply to learn more.
  1. Experienced Teacher/Mentor to volunteer to mentor a 2019 rookie teacher.
  2. Looking for Game Sponsors: power companies, building companies, trash companies, roofers (companies that would play a role in a disaster recovery) that we could contact to get sponsors for the game.

Rookie Coach Resources
  1. 2005 BEST Robotics Coaches Survival Guide
  2. July 2019 Teacher Mentor Institute Material: 2018 Engineering Notebook Examples & Scoresheet + Pre-Class Reading listing
  3. Support Required from Schools
  4. Email me at linda.king@bestinc.org for additional resources or if you have questions.
From our Friends at MathWorks
Robot Autonomy Webinar, 2-hrs, 9 September
  • This live webinar, which will be recorded and archived for re-play anytime, is in development
  • The webinar will be key and will focus on autonomous robot programming using VEX Cortex and the BEST IR sensor.
  • Look for more information in future email
  • Autonomous programming overview
  • Temporal (time-based) Programming
  • Dead reckoning
  • Line following (using BEST IR sensor as an encoder)
  • Teach students about autonomous programming options
  • Teach students how to write code (or Simulink models) to use the new BEST IR sensor with VEX Cortex
Rocky Mountain BEST