Five Mohonasen teams took part in the Odyssey of the Mind competition on Saturday, March 5, at Shenendehowa High School.
The Pinewood team placed second in the “Furs, Fins, Feathers and Friends” category while the High School team placed third in the same category for their division. Three Bradt teams also competed in the primary division.
In the “Furs, Fins, Feathers and Friends” category, the Pinewood and High School teams each had to create and present a humorous performance depicting problem solving from the perspective of three different animals. The animals were to help a stranger, help each other, and solve a problem that threatens the survival of all animals. Performances included the animals singing and dancing as well as showing curiosity, sympathy, frustration and joy.
In the primary division, students were asked to solve a problem called “Stir the Pot.” Teams were asked to create three changes in characters who came to life by something magical. A narrator led the scenes by telling a story. Students created scenery, costumes, props and a script on their own with guidance from their coaches.
During the competition, each team presented a long-term performance and was also given an on-the-spot problem to solve with their team to show creativity, teamwork and humor at times. Pinewood Intermediate School placed second in their long-term solution and first in their spontaneous problem.The High School team placed third in their division for their long-term solution. The judges loved their humor, costumes and creativity.
Odyssey of the Mind meets STEM, Common Core, art and 21st century skills through creative problem-solving. The problems provide students with a variety of skills, including:
- Science: Students generate and compare multiple possible solutions to a problem based on how well each is likely to meet the criteria and constraints of the problem.
- Technology: Students demonstrate creative thinking, construct knowledge, and develop innovative products and processes using technology.
- Engineering: They apply the engineering design process, troubleshooting, research and development, invention and innovation, and experimentation in problem solving and engineering design.
- Mathematics: Students utilize estimation, measurement, computational skills and spatial relationships in order to work within budgetary, time and space limitations.
Mohonasen’s Odyssey of the Mind program bids farewell this year to two seniors, Camren Jeffers and Austin Blanchard. Camren has been an active participant for the last three years. Austen has participated in the Mohonasen Odyssey of the Mind Program for 11 years and has taken on leadership roles to guide younger odyssey students.
“We also say a farewell and thank you to Austen’s mom, Kelly Blanchard, who has coached her three children on teams for 14 years. Kelly has been a wonderful asset to new coaches as they began their coaching journeys over the years, and we appreciate the Blanchards’ dedication to the program,” said Odyssey coordinator Lori Ranze-McCullough.
“Odyssey of the Mind has been a great experience for students this year,” added Ranze-McCullough. “They made great friendships, showed teamwork and had fun.”