Imagine Firestone has had the good fortune to have teams from our school reach World Finals every year of our program! We think it is because our kids are exceptionally creative and know the benefits of teamwork, though we may be a bit biased. Odyssey parents have told us that participating in Odyssey was the best thing their child could have done to prepare for 'life' - it teaches teamwork, budgeting, craftsmanship, perseverance, and public speaking in a fun and creative way.
Odyssey of the Mind is an international educational program that provides creative problem-solving opportunities for students from kindergarten through college. Kids apply their creativity to solve problems that range from building mechanical devices to presenting their own interpretation of literary classics. They then bring their solutions to competition on the local, state, and World level. Thousands of students from throughout the U.S. and from about 25 other countries participate in the program.
How do students benefit from participation? In Odyssey of the Mind, students learn skills that will last a lifetime. They work in teams so they learn cooperation and respect for the ideas of others. They evaluate ideas and make decisions on their own, gaining greater self-confidence and increased self-esteem along the way. They work within a budget, so they learn to manage their money. They learn that there’s often more than one way to solve a problem, and that sometimes the process is more important than the end result.
The 2016-2017 Teams have been created and coaches have volunteered! There are single spots left on most of the teams, so if your child would like to sign up there may be a spot available. Spots are first come first served, please email Lori Olson at firstname.lastname@example.org to inquire.
Following are brief descriptions of the problems, full problem descriptions/requirements/restrictions will be available once teams are formed.
Problem 1: Catch Us If You Can
Problem 2: Odd-a-Bot
For this problem, teams will create a humorous story about a family that brings home an “Odd-a-Bot.” Instead of being programmed to perform tasks, this Odd-a-Bot robot learns from watching others. Teams will design, build, and operate an original robot that demonstrates human characteristics when performing tasks. In the performance, the Odd-a-Bot will move and learn human actions from watching characters perform activities such as household chores, creating art, and dancing. The Odd-a-Bot learns more than it was expected to learn, and will confuse its actions with humorous results.
Problem 3: Classics... It's Time, OMER
The future and the past collide in this problem about important works of art – both existing and yet-to-be-created. Teams will create and present an original performance about time travelers looking to discover the inspiration for great works of art, little did they know – it was OMER every time! The travelers go back in time — twice into our past and once into our future. They will see OMER inspire two classical artists and a team-created artist from our future. The performance will include how the three works of art positively impact the world, a visual and audible effect that indicates when time travel is occurring, two re-creations of the classic works of art selected from a list, and a team-created work of art.
Problem 4: Ready, Set, Balsa, Build!
Creativity can be defined by using only what you have to get a job done. In this problem, teams will design, build, and test a structure made of only balsa wood and glue that will balance and support as much weight as possible. The structure must include sets of balsa pieces of predetermined sizes and quantities as listed in the problem. Some sets must be parts of the structure while others, if incorporated, will receive additional score - the more sets of pieces used, the higher the score! Teams will present a performance with a theme about using what's available and that incorporates weight-placement and assembling original team creations.
Problem 5: To Be Continued: A Superhero Cliffhanger
Creativity is being taken away from the world, and it is up to Odyssey teams to rescue it! Teams will create and present a humorous performance about an unexpected superhero that encounters three different situations where it must save creativity in some way. The superhero will change appearance when it displays its superpowers and go back to blending in with society when not. The performance will also include a clumsy sidekick, a nemesis character, a choreographed battle, and a cliffhanger ending.
Primary: Movin' Out!
Grades K-2 only
Teams will create and present a performance about a group that is moving out of one place and into another. In one scene, team-created props and scenery will make up the first setting. To transform into a new setting, team-made devices will move the scenery and props to a new location. Everything in the setting for the next scene must be made from the transported items. The performance will also include a humorous Moving Character, a reason for the move, and a lost item that is rediscovered in an unusual place.
If you are interested in Odyssey of the Mind please look a program flyer in the next few weeks. If you would consider becoming a coach or a co-coach, please contact Lori Olson, Odyssey Building Coordinator, at email@example.com. The number of teams we can support is limited only by the number of coaches - so please consider coaching. Colorado Odyssey provides coaching advice and support, and there are several 'veteran' coaches to seek out for advice.
Important dates for the 2016-2017 Odyssey of the Mind season:
Information night: September 15, 6:30 pm in the school gym
Sign ups Due: September 30th, sign up form and fee payment* due in the school office
Team Kick-Off night: October 20th, 6:30 pm in the school gym
Regional Tournament: March 18th, 2017 - We are in the Longs Peak region.
State Tournament: April 8, 2017 - No Spring Break conflict this year! (but check the 8th grade trip dates please)
World Finals: May 24-28, 2018, East Lansing, Michigan
*Please note - there is a $100 program fee for each student participating in Odyssey of the Mind. This fee pays for program registration, Regional and State (though not Worlds) registration, and supplies for the team during the program year. Because this is an extracurricular program and the fees entirely support the costs of the program, we cannot offer scholarships or reduced fees for participation.
Our teams would welcome your financial help. The cost for the tournament is approximately $5000 per team, excluding travel costs. Please consider sponsoring a team’s participation in the World competition. All donations/sponsorships are tax deductible, the school’s tax ID is 26-1347003. We prefer checks/money orders be mailed to the school (no fees) but if it is more convenient for you, we can accept credit card donations over the phone or in the office, or you may use the PayPal link below. On any donation. please indicate if the donation is to a specific team member, team, or the program as a whole. THANK YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT!