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What Is Gearing Up?

Six weeks. Identical kits. No instructions. All assembly required.

Gearing Up, a one-hour documentary produced by KETC in St. Louis and Story House Productions in Washington, D.C. chronicles behind-the-scenes drama and excitement leading up to the 2008 FIRST Robotics National Competition. Teams receive identical robot kits with no instructions and have just six weeks to build a robot capable of performing specific tasks.

The documentary follows four teams through their regional competitions. Miss Daisy is a seasoned team from Ambler, Pennsylvania. RoboDoves is a small, all-girl rookie team from Baltimore, Maryland. Rambotics is a team of teenagers incarcerated at the Ridge View Academy correctional facility for boys in Watkins, Colorado. And Ratchet Rockers is a group of suburban kids from Wentzville, Missouri, near St. Louis. 

All of the young people and their mentors demonstrate the ingenuity, determination and teamwork required to compete in FIRST Robotics – “the varsity sport of the mind.”

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