FIRST – “Inspiring Success” Video Release

I am very proud to announce the release to over 15,000 teams, and reaching over a million students, mentors, volunteers,  and sponsors world wide:

A chance of a lifetime. On June 9th & 10th, a professional production came to SLEHS along with a representative from FIRST headquarters to work with the high school robotics team, The Flying Toasters, 3641, to film the scenes for this video.  To protect our students, professional actors with experience were used for the main characters, but the extras were supplied by our team.
You can find the video on FIRST’s Website:
Over the two days and nearly 24 hours of production, our students got the experience of a lifetime, as they not only worked as extras, but as supporting crew, operated the robot behind the camera, taught the actors about robotics, and provided technical advice. In turn the production crew embraced our team as they “showed them the ropes”, such as lighting, camera angles, staging, composition, etc.  Everyone went away knowing more, a tribute to the willingness to exchange talent.
If you look closely, you can find many “Easter Eggs”.  I counted 72. Can you find more?
Watching the final video, our team was so taken with how they captured our team’s approach on FIRST, students, mentors, as well as our team dynamics. Moreover, in my opinion. “There is Something for Everyone.” Robotics is just a vehicle, it’s building students what the Flying Toasters is all about.

Meetings this week


To remind our team, we are having a competition team meeting Wednesday from 6-9pm, doors open at 5:30pm.

On Thursday we are having a mentor only meeting, so anyone interested in being a mentor on the team, that is parents, former FIRST members, previous mentors, sponsors, etc. please come!  The meeting will be from 7-9pm.  Please note the time change to 7pm, to accommodate travel.


FIRST Lego League Informational Meeting

Brummer, Salem and Sayre 4th and 5th graders and their parents are invited to an Informational Meeting about FIRST Lego League on Monday, July 23rd at 6:30.  This will be held at South Lyon East High School.  Enter from the John’s Road entrance and follow the “Robotics” signs.  Plan to stay for a community-wide Robotics Open House afterwards where you can learn about all levels of FIRST Robotics in South Lyon.  For more information on First Lego League, visit

Design and Mechatronics Apprenticeship at Brose

Donald Hoffmann, Manager of Product Team Closure Sytems/Development of Brose North America is seeking to find 3 students that are graduating this year and are interested in the Apprenticeship program.  During this program, these students complete their Associate’s Degree (paid for by Brose) and also get paid an hourly wage.  They are also guaranteed a job at Brose for at least 2 more years after graduation.   Please share this opportunity with your students and encourage them to contact Donald Hoffman with the contact information below.

Please see below the information and links about our open apprentice positions.

At Brose in Auburn Hills we are running a German style apprentice program through MAT2. We saw a decline in capable technicians and designers, so five years ago we started two apprentice programs. These two programs are Mechatronics and Technical Product Design.  Our Mechatronics apprentices are trained to be the first line of defense at our plants for troubleshooting and maintaining production lines or test technicians at our design headquarters. Technical Product Design apprentices are our solution to the aging designer staff.  We see product design is a key element in innovation and sustainability in the automotive industry. We view designers as the glue bridging the gaps between engineers, customer teams, and testing.

The apprentices get trained for 3 years and after graduation they have an employment guarantee at least for 2 more years in a full-time job either as Mechatronics technician or Designer.

The next round of apprentices will start end of August 2018.

With the following links you can find the information’s about our open apprentice positions.


Technical Product Design

General information about our apprentice program  you can find here:

Brose North America, Inc.

3933 Automation Avenue
Auburn Hills, MI 48326
United States
Phone: +1 248 339 4707
Fax: 4799
Mobile: +1 248 318 1827

Where bad robots go…

No, it’s not a prison, nor are we going to put things that go bad in there.  It’s our new robotics lock-up area where we can put our stuff, keep it organized, and keep it safe.  Many thanks to project manager and mentor Mr. Perion,  Mr. Martin, Mr. Gaut, Mr. Novilla and Mr. Klein.  Next step is to prep and paint it!  Look at those great shelves and the door rolls open too!

Filming At SLEHS

A lot of things have been happening lately, all for the good of our team. More especially, the team has been given a huge, once in a lifetime, opportunity by being selected by a local film company to shoot a video for FIRST Headquarters. Filming will occur this weekend from 7am to 7pm on both Saturday & Sunday.  A representative from FIRST HQ will be on hand.  (Here is a link to a video they completed for GM about a robotics team:

Our team is being allowed to have six students behind the scenes to help with set up of the scenes as well as driving the 2018 robot. When needed, these students can become extras in the shots. We will need to have alteast one person from the 2018 drive teams (Bread or Butter) on hand for driving the 2018 robot when needed.

As this is a huge impact on our community, our district, and our team, we are being allowed to have (2) students behind the scenes record, take pictures, document, etc. the whole venue so that we can use this incredible event for a newspaper article, chairman’s award material, impact study material, etc.

FIRST wants this video to be fair to all teams, so the filming and subsequent video cannot show any preference to a particular team or entity. Therefore, no team shirts are allowed, as well as any items with logos on it, such as Red Wings, Tigers, Abercrombie & Fitch, etc.  Plain shirts work best.  Also, we want people to be in closed toe shoes, clothing without holes in them, etc.  You will need to sign a permission slip & video release and bring it with you when you come.

Because filming is 7am to 7pm each day, and there are many graduation happenings, we are breaking up the time into slots for each day.

I know this is short notice, but it’s purely a once in a lifetime experience.  Please complete the google spreadsheet ASAP. If you are interested use the contact  page of this website to let us know. Thank you!

Changes For The Flying Toasters

“Yesterday I was clever, so I wanted to change the world. Today I am wise, so I am changing myself.” ― Rumi

 For the past seasons we have tried many different ways to provide a better experience, better way of developing skills, and a better way to have a more cohesive team. We have tried lecture type sessions, hands on type sessions, and project based sessions.  Still we want more for our students.

Looking back on previous years, going over reflective feedback, the coaching staff sees a common theme.  There are two seasons for the team, one that runs from Kick-off in January thru end of April, and one that runs the rest of the year (from MARC in June thru Bloomfield Girls Competition in November).  So we have labelled them FIRST Robotics Competition (January thru May), and The Flying Toaster Camp  (June thru December).

The Flying Toaster Camp is designed to 1) form the team, and 2) build the students skills.  Typically, our first team meeting has been in early October. It becomes very frantic and hurriedly as we try to get ready in three months for the FIRST Game reveal in January.  For new students to the team, it can be overwhelming.

This year, we have moved our first team meeting to June so that we can have more time,  more experiences, more team bonding events, more excursions to our partnerships, more post season competitions (five to be exact vs. two typically), and more development of skills.  The coaching staff is looking at depth and breadth of experience, and hope these changes will facilitate that.

Funding for the team is also changing to be inline with the two seasons.  The Flying Toaster Camp is funded by the individual $250 non-refundable team fee.  This is to cover the expenses from June through December, including the competition event entrance fees, supplies and materials for the team, food, etc.  If paid by June 25th, a Flying Toaster team shirt will be ordered.

Unlike the Flying Toaster Camp where there is already a robot developed with just improvements and maintenance costs as well as team bonding and skill development costs, the FIRST Robotics Competition season we have to cover the development of a the robot(s) for the new game, materials to build the robot(s), field, etc; team supplies, entrance fees for FIRST events, travel costs, and the list goes on.  Typically, we see a budget of $50,000 for this period.  To fund this much larger budget, we look towards corporate sponsorship and our partnerships to help us in meeting our needs.

Stay tuned for more information over the next couple months as the coaching staff and mentors work on bettering the Flying Toaster Experience.  We over me.