Robots Build Kids!!

Level Up Robots logo
Kids having fun with drivetrain they just built.

Kids build character, knowledge and skills while having fun building robots.

Level Up Robots is a hands-on robotics learning studio that teaches kids how to design, build, program and operate robots through a series of challenges or competitions. No previous robotics experience necessary!


Gain the confidence to solve challenging problems while learning real-world applications for robots.


Solve problems using design thinking.


Collaborate with teammates to integrate design, build and programming skills to make rebots complete challenges.


Learn to program robots to operate without a driver to complete tasks.


We provide different programs to target the needs of different age groups from elementary through high school. Unlike summer camps or other short term programs, our curriculum is designed to stack, taking advantage of learnings in earlier sessions. Students get to continuously learn and build on what they've learned in earlier sessions. This allows for higher level learning and increased learning velocity as kids Level Up their skills.

Mini Bots

The perfect program for kids 8-10. Kids in this program will work with Lego® Mindstorms® to build and program an autonomous, mobile robot to execute multiple missions. Lessons are designed to give the students a foundation in mechanical and software engineering. There is even a competition available for students of this age!

This program encourages kids to attend one class per week.

Story Missions

A program for students in grades 6-8 who want to get their feet wet with robotics and see how easy and rewarding engineering can be, but aren't ready to participate in a competitive team.

This program includes one class per week.

Up Level Missions

This program is for older students, those that come in with more experience, or who have completed the Story Missions. Students will challenge themselves with even greater challenges focused on more detailed missions.

This program includes one class per week.

Competition Levels

The program for young roboticists in middle and high school who want to challenge themselves to build the best solution possible and see how effective it really is. The competitions are engaging and fun with enough challenge to bring out the best in everyone. This is the program most members belong in.

Students in this program are encouraged to attend one class per week, and may join as many work days as they like.

Master Club

The truly elite students will be invited to join the Master Club. These are the students who not only understand robots and compete effectively, but are also leaders of other students. The will help mentor other students and teams, and grow even more by teaching. These are the future captains of industry, and are focused on both technology and leadership.

Bonus Camps

Level Up Robots hosts summer and school's out camps focused on helping students improve in STEAM, programming and robotics skills, while having fun. Join the mailing list to hear about upcoming opportunities!

About Level Up Robots

Level Up Robots was created to make learning STEAM education (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Match) approachable, physical and fun for all kids.

We encourage kids to learn in a way that broadly addresses real-world problems. Working in teams, Level Up Robots inspires students to:

  • Ask questions that help define the problem
  • Explore ideas and creatively brainstorm solutions
  • Build and program real implementations of crazy ideas
  • Test their creations against other solutions
  • Innovate to improve solutions and compete more effectively

Through this process, students track their progress, get clear feedback from peers and mentors about how their ideas work, and leverage the engineering design process to innovate, test and improve their creation. One project flows into the next, building their skills to the next level.

Learn More


Competitive Robots

Championship appearances

Years of coaching


What Kids and Parents say about Level Up Robots

Our students have a great time challenging themselves and competing. They learn the value of teamwork, collaborative problem solving and calculated risk. They also learn how to win graciously and handle the disappointment of a loss.

Parents see their kids growing in technology, math and engineering skills, as well as the ability to communicate, collaborate and challenge themselves. And the competitions are a lot of fun for everyone!

I like the process and seeing everyone's different ideas coming to life. Going through those designs was the hardest part because we all made prototypes and some worked better than others. It was disappointing when yours didn't work, but I liked testing. The tension built up a lot, so when it worked it felt amazing.


6th Grade

This was my son's first robotics competition, and we were not completely sure what to expect. The event turned out to be a lot of fun. It was a awesome to watch the kids compete and work through issues that arose with their bot. I can't wait till the next competition.



I like building stuff and building robots are especially fun. We get to use lots of different tools and parts, and then we can drive them when they're done!


5th grade


We were so glad to find Level Up Robots for our son! He has always been interested in computers and coding, but we couldn't find any place in Lawrence that would take younger kids. The instructors are amazing (shout-out to Ms. Merritt) and make learning through problem-solving fun and engaging. We are so thankful that Level Up Robots exists for kids like our son!




My daughter looks forward to her time at robotics each week and is excited to share all she's doing when I pick her up. Jeannie is a patient coach who challenges the students with new activities and skills. I look forward to watching my daughter grow in her STEM and teamwork skills in the years to come!



Get Involved!

Level Up Robots provides a truly one-of-a-kind experience for kids whose parents want them to learn the technology skills of the future. Level Up Robots teaches those skills in an engaging and fun way that keeps kids interested, inspired and learning.

Sign up now!


The Level Up Robots team has several years of success leading and coaching robotics teams to succes, and teaching kids robotics, teamwork and leadership skills, at elementary, middle school and high schools levels.

Tom Walton

Head Coach Coach Tom Walton is a professional software developer with 25 years of professional experience. Tom began coaching and mentoring robotics teams nine years ago. He has worked with competitive teams at both the high school and middle school levels, coaching his students to nine robotics team awards, including two Kansas state championships. Tom has been on the organizing committee for the Kansas City Developer Conference for three years and a conference speaker several times over. Students with robotics experience may recognize him as a FIRST Lego League judge and/or head referee.

Jeannie Merritt

Coach Coach Jeannie Merritt is a certified teacher with 20+ years of experience, including five as a robotics coach. She has a passion for experiential learning for all students. Jeannie is entering her sixth year as a robotics mentor.

Jennifer Nigro

Coach Coach Jennifer Nigro has a marketing communications background with experience in engineering, technical, business, agriculture and animal health industries. Jennifer has a passion for STEM and experiential learning, and has been associated with competitive robotics through her children for six years.

Joe Andrew

Coach Coach Joe is a research geologist studying the evolution of plate tectonics. He manages the KU Isotope Geochemistry Laboratory, sometimes breaking and /or fixing expensive analytic machines with lasers, plasma, huge electromagnets, high voltage, and cryogenic liquids. He builds powered and unpowered Legos with his elementary school age kid. He has lots of engineering experience and is relearning coding.

Frequently Asked Questions

Please check out the frequently asked quetions below, or contact us for more information.

  • Why robots?

    Robots appeal to students because they allow hands-on learning that give students a way to experience their ideas through multiple senses. They also allow students to leverage their natural strengths, abilities and interests while learning new ones through creative problem solving, engineering, math and programming.

  • Competitions put a fine point on problem solving and teamwork skills. The team gets an opportunity to test and prove their solution against those of other teams. Competitions are also a great way to understand the strengths and weaknesses of your own team, and learn from the solutions that other teams have devised. Teams learn to demonstrate professionalism and collaboration, helping each other solve problems and improve even in the midst of competition.

  • Your child will learn important concepts in engineering, programming, math, problem solving and teamwork. This includes communicating their ideas, give and receive feedback and integrate their ideas with others.

  • Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math are the foundation for solving the world’s greatest problems. We need to encourage the children of today to excel in these topics so they can save the world. STEAM careers are exciting, fun, and pay well while solving those and many other problems. Even students who do not pursue STEAM careers will benefit from the skills they gain through greater understanding of technology, problem-solving and communication.

  • Teams will prepare for competitions while they work in the studio. They will study the mechanics of the game and identify strategies. They will build and test their solutions together. They will compete against each other and help each other out, learning to build, program, drive and think through options to improve their solutions. Competitions are also integrated projects, including aspects of math, English and science to meet the challenge. The in-person competitions are typically held on Saturdays throughout the state, as spectators are encouraged to join in the fun. If the team does enough at the state competition, they can also earn their way in the world competition, where they will meet, work with and compete against students from around the globe.


Level Up Robots is located at Wakarusa Drive and Bob Billings Parkway in Lawrence, KS. We are open for classes on Tuesday and Wednesday evenings, and work time on Saturday mornings. Please stop by to visit with us!


711 W 23rd Street Ste 9

Lawrence, KS 66046

- -

Monday 4:30pm - 6pm

Tuesday, Wednesday 4:30pm - 9pm

Saturdays 9am - noon


+1 785 330 5099