Core Values

FIRST's Philosophies

The Core Values are the heart of FIRST.® By embracing the Core Values, participants learn that friendly competition and mutual gain are not separate goals, and that helping one another is the foundation of teamwork.

We express the FIRST philosophies of Gracious Professionalism® and Coopertition® through our Core Values:

    • Discovery: We explore new skills and ideas.

    • Innovation: We use creativity and persistence to solve problems.

    • Impact: We apply what we learn to improve our world.

    • Inclusion: We respect each other and embrace our differences.

    • Teamwork: We are stronger when we work together.

    • Fun: We enjoy and celebrate what we do!

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Gracious Professionalism®

This is part of the ethos of FIRST. It's a way of doing things that encourages high-quality work, emphasizes the value of others, and respects individuals and the community. With it, fierce competition and mutual gain are not separate notions. It is to learn and compete like crazy but treat one another with respect and kindness in the process.


This produces innovation. At FIRST, it is displaying unqualified kindness and respect in the face of fierce competition. It is founded on the concept and a philosophy that teams can and should help each other even as they compete. It involves learning from teammates. It is teaching teammates. It is learning from Coaches and Mentors. It is managing and being managed. It means competing always but assisting and enabling others when you can.


In FIRST LEGO League, outreach is about sharing the our work on the project, the robot as a team. It is also about spreading STEM and FIRST in the community. Examples of different types of outreach include:

    • Explaining what FIRST LEGO League is: team building, STEM focus, more than just robots

    • Teaching about your project, core values challenges, robot building

    • Demoing your team’s robot

    • Displaying your project or core values posters

    • Running a programming class

    • Displaying MINDSTORMS models that the audience can interact with

    • Anything! Just talk about what a great time the team's had with FIRST, what skills we've been learning, and why we think it’s important!


Core Values and Outreach


Core Values and Outreach

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