Future City Junior - Team Center

This secure site will:
  • Allow you to set up teams
    • Add and change members
  • Allow you to upload Essays
    • Automatically time-stamp deliverables
    • Send acknowledgements for uploaded files
  • Obtain detailed scoring reports

The 2022-23 Program

The North Texas Regional will again offer a Junior program for 4-5th graders. This program is an introduction to the full (6-8th grade) Future City Competition effort. It includes the research essay, physical model, and video presentation deliverables.

Download 2022-23 rules and overview for the Junior program.

Please note: this program is only available in North Texas and a few other FC regions at this time.


Schools and youth organizations with 4th-5th grade students may register by 31 October by completing the online form. There is no registration fee at this time for the Future City Jr. program.


The students will work in teams. Teams consist of three 4-5th grade students, an educator and an engineer-mentor. (Suggestions on finding mentors.)

  • Students must be from the same organization, but not necessarily the same class or grade.
  • For 2022-23, teams may work in-person or remotely (collaborating online).
  • Organizations with large groups may either
    • Enter multiple teams. At this time, we do not anticipate having to limit the number of teams per organization, however, the possibility exists depending on schedule constraints.
    • Work as a class or group prior to the model showing, but select the three students (one team) that will represent the group at the competition.

Part 1: Research Essay

Climate Change

Students write an essay that introduces their future city and provides a solution to this year's challenge-Develop an innovative, futuristic solution to answer the challenge of climate change on your future city.

Download the Junior Essay Requirements for a complete description. Briefly, the essay should:

  • Introduce the team's city - at least 100 years in the future.
  • Describe what the city and life was like in the past and the effects climate change had on your city.
  • Choose one climate change effect and describe:
    • One adaptation solution –using technology to reduce the harmful impact of climate change.
    • One mitigation technique –using technology to reduce greenhouse gases.
  • The essay should be no more than 1,000 words and free of grammatical and spelling errors. It can include a maximum of four graphics. It should also have a bibliography that cites at least three sources of information.
  • The Research Essay will be due 2 December 2022. Late submissions will be accepted through 9 December 2022 (with penalty points deducted).

Download Junior Essay Requirements for specific details and rubrics.

Part 2: Physical Model

Students build a physical scale model of a section of their city using recycled materials. This is the opportunity for the team to realize their vision of the city and see their ideas for the future come to life.

  • The Model will be built to scale (scale chosen by team).
  • It will illustrate the team's concept of their future city.
  • It will be focused on demonstrating the team's solution to the annual challenge: Climate Change.
  • It should include at least one moving part.
  • The model will be built primarily of recycled materials. The total value of the materials used may not exceed $50 and must be reported on the Competition Expense form.
  • Model size will be no bigger than 25" (w) x 36" (l) x 20" (h).
  • The model is worth 70 points and will be judged according to the rubric criteria with includes quality of design and workmanship, innovation and futuristic elements, and teamwork.

For 2022-23: To accommodate both in-person and virtual learning environments, there are two model building options.

  1. Your team can choose to build one single model
  2. Your team can choose to build multiple model segments. These model segments are separate pieces that represent various sections of the city. Model segments do not need to fit together physically, but they do need to fit within the maximum model volume (above).

Download Junior Model Requirements for specific details.


Coming soon

Letter for teachers to print and send to parents of student competitors explaining the FC Junior program and timeline (Sep-2022).

Essay Resources

  • Essay: Climate Change video
  • Past Junior Best Essays 2021 and 2022

Model Resources

Model Video Resources

The model video demonstration was required during our two years of COVID virtual competitions. For 2022-23, the teams will demonstrate their models in-person, on-site at the Regional Competition event. However, the videos can provide an example of some of the best models from 2021 and 2022.

Program Handbook

The Future City Competition program handbook (download) has been written for the middle-school program and is a valuable guide for the teaching/leading the project. The Junior program has been simplified somewhat from the complete middle-school program described in the handbook. Specifically, for the Junior Competition:

  • The Project Plan, City-Team Presentation, and Q&A deliverables are NOT included in the Junior program.
  • The Essay is shortened such that it need not include a detailed description of the city and the maximum word count is 1000.
  • There will be no formal oral City Presentation. However, the student team-members will have the opportunity to talk to the judges. See Model Judging information below.
  • The Model, likewise, is simplified to focus primarily on demonstrating the annual theme, and to cost no more than $50
Keeping these changes in mind, the handbook information on Team-building, Engineering Design Process, Project Planning, and City Planning may be useful as background.


  • The essay and model will be judged by multiple judges (technical professionals) and the scores for each averaged then added together to come up with a composite/total score for each team.
  • The essay will be judged during Dec-Jan.
  • Model judging will take place on-site at the NTX Regional Competition.
  • While there will be no formal presentation by the students, the team will stand with their model during judging to briefly explain their research solution and answer the judges' questions.
  • Judges will spend approximately 5 minutes with each model display.
  • Adult team members (teachers, mentors) may observe, but are not allowed to participate.

Awards Ceremony and Announcement of Winners

The results of the NTX Future City Junior Competition will be announced during the online Awards Ceremony in late January (exact date TBA). Scores for individual teams and deliverables will be available for educators following the announcements.


  • Future City Competition Junior will provide prizes for Best Essay, Best Model, and Best Overall Junior Team.
  • Sponsors will also give out Special Awards recognizing accomplishments in various categories, such as: Green City, Energy Efficiency, etc.

Other Rules

  • Participants will comply with the basic rules of the Future City Competition program as laid out in the handbook and as modified in the soon-to-be-published Junior rules and rubrics.
  • Deadlines will not be extended. Teams making submittals after the deadlines will receive penalty points.
  • Any conflicts will be resolved locally. There is no appeal.
  • The judges' decisions are final.
  • Prizes are not transferable or exchangeable.
List of Penalties
  • Late or missing work. See Schedule for specific dates.
    • Essay after due date - Minus 5 points
    • Essay after final deadline - will not be scored at all
    • Note: Missing work does not disqualify a team.
  • Exceeding the maximum word limit on the Research Essay - Minus 10 points
  • Over budget or undocumented expenses - Model costs exceeding $50 or missing Expense Form - Minus 15 points
    • Incomplete expense form - missing receipts, not accounting for all major items, missing teacher signature - Minus 5 points
  • Unsportsmanlike conduct by team members or guests (includes rude behavior to judges, competitors, or disruption of another team's judging session) - Minus 20 points
  • Destruction of another team's model or presentation materials. Or actions that malign, disparage, or harass regional volunteers - Disqualification

2022-23 Schedule

Thru 31 Oct Registration
Oct-Nov Student teams research and write essay
2 Dec Essay due
  • Submit in electronic format - .doc
  • Upload files through the Team Center
  • Files received by deadline will avoid late penalties.
    Late submissions are allowed - see below for dates and penalties.
9 Dec Last date for Essay files.
Files received by this date will have 5 points deducted.
Competition Day -
28 Jan 2023
Competition location TBA

Schools and Organizations

2022-23 Registered Organizations (as of 31-Oct)

  • Armstrong Elementary, Sachse
  • Chapel Hill Academy, Fort Worth
  • Donald Elementary, LISD STEM
  • Doral Academy, Buda
  • IW Evans Intermediate, Bonham
  • J Delaney Elementary, Kennedale
  • Lorena Elementary, Lorena
  • Lindsay Elementary, Lindsay
  • McKeever Elementary, Alamo
  • RF Patterson Elementary, Arlington
  • Ravia Public Schools, Ravia, OK
  • Washington MS, El Dorado, AR
  • Watson Technology Center, Garland
  • Woodland Elementary, Graham
  • Universal Academy, Coppell

Email Updates

Email Archive
18-Nov-22: Essay due 2 Dec, Regional event at TCC-TRt
01-Nov-2022: Getting Started, Entering Teams, Essay deadline
20-Sep-2022: FC Junior Competition Management System
Sign-up for Email Updates
Email updates for NTX Future City Jr. participants give you the latest information about the NTX program, including schedule, rules, deliverables, resources, and other need-to-know items. They are issued as necessary (about every 20 days) and are open to anyone involved (teachers, volunteers, parents, students).


Junior Competition Judging