TechBrick started in 2003 when 11-year old Amy Ciavolino received a LEGO RCX system. She was instantly captured by the mechanics and programming required to run the robot. Watching one of the early MD FLL Championships, she said, “I can do this.” And so, the Ciavolino family entered the world of US FIRST.
Amy’s father, Marco, mailed an invitation to homeschoolers in the region. Thirty eager young engineers showed up for the first meeting. This became the start of our first FLL team and what later became a monthly Friday Night LEGO Club which served as a feeder for new teams.
The TechBrick Parrot has ridden on at least one World Championship robot every year a TechBrick team has qualified for Worlds.
In 2004, our first FLL and Jr.FLL teams were formed. From there we grew, adding multiple FLL teams each year. After two years of FLL, our initial team members entered high school; thus, TechBrick chose to engage in FRC and continued for two years before taking on the new FTC program. Over its 10-year history, TechBrick has fielded 9 Jr.FLL, 15 FLL, 7 FTC, and now 1 FRC team. Our FTC teams have earned trips to the World Championships 5 times; the FLL teams have won major awards at the MD Championships every year. Each of the TechBrick teams has been comprised of 5 to 21 students, totaling over 238 years of student education.
TechBrick opens its doors to all students who want to develop their STEM skills and teamwork in a fun, Amy's FLL Team value-centered environment. Consequently, AZE is comprised of students from three Maryland counties with multiple home schools and high schools represented. Our mentors have a wide variety of backgrounds and occupations; we have been aided by knowledgeable and committed engineers, scientists, business leaders, and manufacturers from organizations like the Army Research Laboratory (ARL), CACI, Verizon Wireless, and DAP Products.
For more information, check out http://www.techbrick.com.