Odyssey of the Mind World Finals Update

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a few trophies won at a problem-solving competition

Braille Works is a proud sponsor of Odyssey of the Mind at Rowlett Academy in Bradenton, Florida.  Three teams from the Rowlett Academy represented the state of Florida at the Odyssey of the Mind World Finals held in Ames, Iowa, at Iowa State University, May 23- 27, 2018.

Odyssey of the Mind is a creative problem-solving competition where students work in groups of seven or less to present a solution to one of five problems. Students work on these solutions for six to eight months.  Adults are not permitted to share ideas, help solve, or weigh in on any aspect of the problem-solving process.  In addition to the long-term problem, students are also given an unknown Spontaneous Problem to solve.

There are about 280 Odyssey of the Mind teams in the state of Florida. Thirty-three of those teams attended World Finals and seven are from the Manatee/Sarasota area.

The results are in…

Rowlett Academy’s first-year team consisting of 4th and 5th graders, coached by Samantha Robinson, Lauren Whiddon and Jake Whidden, earned 3rd place in the World. They participated in the Balsa Wood Structure Problem 4, Division 1, Animal House.  They created a structure weighing 15 grams, and it was able to hold 680 pounds, but it was the hilarious performance that earned the judges’ favor.

Rowlett Academy’s Alumni Team took 8th place in the Technical Problem 2, Emoji Speak for Yourself, Division III, coached by Christine Sket. Their performance told a story of a forgotten emoji using no words, only actions, and music.  The team created devices to assist in telling the story, but the live musical duo of the violin and piano captivated the judges.

Rowlett Academy’s other Alumni Team, Division III, reached a new level with the Balsa Wood Problem 4 by creating an electromagnet device that assisted in lifting weights to place on the crusher board that rests on the structure.  This device earned the team the highest honors at State Finals, a Ranatra Fusca.  The team faced tougher competition at World Finals, and they had some setbacks. However, they didn’t let obstacles get in the way and they recruited help from another team to earn 27th place out of 46 teams.

We look forward to seeing what next year holds for these future problem solvers!

Teamwork makes the dream work.

You can view the performances here:

World Final Scores: https://www.odysseyofthemind.com/wf2018/world-finals-2018-scores/#

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This post was written by Christine Sket

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