Elementary Competitions & Programs

FIRST Lego League, Jr.

FIRST Lego League, Jr.

FIRST Lego League, Jr.


 K – 3rd  Grade

  • Teams of 2-6
  • Real-world scientific concepts
  • Research, teamwork, construction, imagination
  • Build a moving model of LEGO bricks
  • Develop a poster display of their work at the Regional Lego Expo AND NSBE’s Annual Convention 

It is never too early to discover STEM!

FIRST® LEGO® League Junior was developed to introduce children ages 5-10 years to STEM and engineering topics by the colorful Lego bricks many  already know.

Students will explore real existing problems such as resources, recycling, energy, or the coexistence of humans and animals. They create a Show Me poster that presents their discovery and their team, and they build a motorized model of LEGO bricks. 

Is FLL, Jr. Fun?


FIRST Lego League

FIRST Lego League, Jr.

FIRST Lego League, Jr.


4th & 5th Grade

  • Teams of 4-5
  • Real-world engineering challenges
  • Build LEGO-based robots
  • Compete at regional competitions AND NSBE’s Annual Convention

FIRST® LEGO® League (FLL) is a program that introduces children to science & technology in a fun, energized atmosphere of sportsmanship.

The objective is to:

  • foster enthusiasm about science and technology in young children.
  • equip the participants with the idea of team spirit
  • encourage children to solve complex tasks in a creative way 

Students will research a given topic within a team, as well as plan, program and test an autonomous robot to solve a mission.  FLL Teams have the opportunity to experience all steps of a real product development process: solving a problem under time pressure with insufficient resources and unknown competitors. FLL is a small micro-cosmos of real business life in all of its aspects. 


FIRST Lego League, Jr.

Microsoft Code Academy


 3rd – 5th Grade

  • Teams of 2-5
  • Explore open-ended challenges designed to enhance STEM skills
  • Build simple, powerful robots while developing teamwork, leadership and communication skills
  •  Compete at regional competitions AND NSBE’s Annual Convention 

The VEX IQ Challenge provides elementary school students with exciting, open-ended robotics and research project challenges that enhance their STEM skills through hands-on, student-centered learning. 

Students build their robot & then use a graphical software to program the robot. There are three parts to the contests: Robot Skills, which is a single robot trying to score as many points as possible; the Teamwork Challenge, where two robots attempt to work together to complete the same task; and and the STEM Research Project and Presentation where teams research a given topic, create a prototype and present to a group of judges.  

Microsoft Code Academy

Black History Quiz Bowl

Microsoft Code Academy


Grades K-5

Students will be able to jump start their future in STEM by choosing from coding classes ranging from Scratch, HTML and JavaScript to app development and game design.

Coding classes will teach computer programming skills through interactive and exciting projects especially for kids who have great imaginations, like figuring out how things work or simply love technology. 


Students will have so much fun creating video games, animated stories and bringing their imaginations to life not realizing all the cool skills he or she is learning along the way: basic coding and programming, problem solving, logic, physics and more!


Black History Quiz Bowl

Black History Quiz Bowl


Mandarin is the most widely spoken language in the world & is highly valuable for future engineers & other STEM professionals.  This introductory class is designed to use interactive lessons to teach K-5 students how to speak Mandarin Chinese by introduce them to the basic language needed for short  conversation. 

Students Will Learn: 

  • Basic spoken Mandarin phrases & vocabulary for everyday life
  • The importance of proper “tones” in Mandarin
  • Greater insight into Chinese culture and its influence on "pop culture"

**There is an additional fee for this year-round enrichment class that meets weekly for 90 minutes  

**New for 2019-20:

Intermediate & Advanced Level Mandarin Classes!

Black History Quiz Bowl

Black History Quiz Bowl

Black History Quiz Bowl


Grades 2-5

  • Teams of 4
  • Research & Teamwork 

In honor of Black History Month, students have the opportunity to celebrate the achievements of African Americans over the history of our country.  Working together, teams learn & compete about the glorious culture and history of people of the African Diaspora through a friendly quiz bowl, jeopardy-style competition.  Topics include HBCU History, The Civil Rights Movement, Sports & Entertainment, The Divine Nine and more!   

Coming Soon!

The Kid Wind Challenge

Open to All Grades: K-3 & 4-8 & 9-12*

Open to All Grades: K-3 & 4-8 & 9-12*

Open to All Grades: K-3 & 4-8 & 9-12*


Students in Grades K-12 participate in the ultimate wind energy learning experience. Our NSBE, Jr.  students are exploring wind energy through the hands-on, investigative, and exciting KidWind Challenge! 

Our future meteorologists & environmental engineers design, build, and test a functional creative wind turbine.  In addition to competing against their peers from around the country, students will have the unique opportunity to interact with wind industry leaders & learn about the rapidly growing industry.    

The KidWind experience will be pivotal for many of our members in helping them think of wind energy as a career choice.   Younger students will also be able to interact with college teams during the event, which gives them a glimpse into some of the college programs and careers they could pursue in the future!  

**HS Kid Wind Teams compete regionally in DC and at NSBE Nationals!

Open to All Grades: K-3 & 4-8 & 9-12*

Open to All Grades: K-3 & 4-8 & 9-12*




Team Practices, Enrichment Classes & Workshops: When Do They Meet?

Many children in the DC Metro Area love STEM but may not want to be an engineer (or even know what engineers do).  For this reason, DMV NSBE, Jr. will offer a variety of STEM programming & other enrichment classes to our members.  To ensure that our members can not only participate in any of our chapter's programming AND outside extra-curricular activities; weekly team practices, enrichment classes, workshops and monthly chapter meetings will occur on the weekends:

Saturday's: 10am-6pm

Sunday's: 1pm-6pm   

**The exact time & day is determined by the coach/facilitator.  

Chapter Meetings: 3rd Sunday of Each Month (4pm-6pm)

Our student-led chapter meetings are hands-on intended for BOTH the student members AND their parents.  

Scheduling our programs on Saturday's & Sunday's gives students, parents & coaches the flexibility to have an enriching NSBE, Jr. experience while also giving them time to spend with family & nurture their non-STEM interests.

 Download a copy of the 2019-20 Program Schedule on the Membership Page. 


How Can We Juggle It All?

Schedules for team practices & enrichment classes will be determined by the dedicated volunteer coaches & mentors serving our children.  From our experiences, the most successful NSBE, Jr. chapters also have a high percentage of parent-coaches who have children in the chapter.   We hope you consider serving as a coach for one of your child's math or technical teams. Besides exploring engineering together & having fun guiding your child (& their teammates) in exciting hands-on STEM adventures - YOU, your co-coach and the parents on your child's team get to decide the practice meeting schedule!  Ex: Will our VEX IQ team practice on Saturday's from 1pm-2:30pm or Sunday's 2pm-3:30pm.  Does this time work well for everyone on our team?  Does it conflict with my son's football & karate schedule?  Will my daughter be able to do Future City, Mandarin, a coding class and also gymnastics with her travelling club program?  

Consider Being a Coach!  Coach & Mentor Training Coming Soon!