FIRST Japan の取り組み ― グローバル人材育成を目指して
NPO法人青少年科学技術振興会 理事 近藤 敬洋

私たちFIRST Japan(NPO法人青少年科学技術振興会)はサイエンスの素養を持ったグローバルに活躍できる人材の育成を目指し、2004年よりFLL(ファースト・レゴリーグ)を開催して参りました。
日本においては株式会社ロボット科学教育とレゴ エデュケーションの支援のもと2004年から開催しており、毎年日本代表チームを世界大会に輩出しております。 昨年度のFLL2014では6チームが4大会(米セントルイス、アーカンソー、豪シドニー、南アヨハネスブルク)に出場し、ロボット部門、プレゼンテーション部門で入賞するなど大活躍しました。


Initiatives of FIRST Japan ― Aiming to Nurture Global Human Talent
Director, FIRST Japan Takahiro Kondo

FIRST Japan has been holding the First Lego League (FLL) since 2004, with the aim of nurturing human talent grounded in the sciences capable of being active globally.

FLL is an international educational program started in 1998 by the American NPO “FIRST” and the Danish company “Lego”, with the object of stimulating interest among children in the fields of science, technology, and engineering. It is now said to be the world’s largest such program, with about 29,000 teams of children participating from 80 countries throughout the world.

The process is that the top teams from the tournaments in each country participate in the world tournament that is held every year.
Also, FLL has been adopted by many educational organizations throughout the world as a practical program for education in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM), and in recent years attention has been focused on project learning as the ideal curriculum.

In Japan the tournament has been held every year since 2004 with the support of Crefus and Lego Education, and every year Japanese teams attend the world tournament.

Last year in FLL2014 6 teams participated in 4 tournaments (St. Louis and Arkansas in USA, Sydney Australia, and Johannesburg South Africa), and won prizes in the robot category and presentation category.

At FLL the children participate in a robot game and a project. In the project, every year a social problem is announced as the theme, and the teams carry out research activities into the theme, and make a presentation on the day of the tournament. It is necessary that the team proposes a solution to the problem, which has no correct answer, but through undertaking the activities they develop innovative creativity and social responsibility.

FLL is not just a robot contest, but we consider it to be a venue at which the children can forge various capabilities such as their creative powers, research capabilities, interest and understanding in science, power of presentation, and teamwork.
Also, children from various countries participate in the world tournament, so they receive various stimuli from interacting together. We want the children to feel that their own stage opens out to the world through the common word “robot”.

We intend to continue with these activities so that in the future FLL will further spread within Japan, and provide a venue to nurture children that are capable of being active globally.