KHS Odyssey of Mind team advances to World Finals
Problem solvers placed second at state tournament
The Kutztown High School Odyssey of the Mind team placed second at the Pennsylvania State Odyssey of the Mind tournament April 7 and advances to the World Finals, held at Iowa State University on May 24 - 26.
“We are thrilled! Most of this team has been working together for five years and several of them have been together for seven. This is the last year that this team will be together as four of the team members are graduating in June. Competing in the World Finals will be a fantastic culminating experience for them,” said Karise Mace, Director, KASD Odyssey of the Mind. “This will be their first trip to the World Finals.”
The Kutzown High School Odyssey of the Mind team members are Porter Holt, Kiana Haring, Asher Cooper, Nathan Hayduk, Emma Kyle, Julia Mace, and Madison Wolf. They are coached by Seth Noggle.
“These students are tenacious problem solvers and work so well as a team. They are extremely creative and hardworking. They have earned third or fourth place finishes at the state competition for the last several years which has prevented them from advancing to the World Finals. However, that has not discouraged them. Instead, it has motivated them to work harder,” said Mace.
She said the main goals of each competition are to work together as a team to solve a problem creatively.
“The hope is that this will result i n finishing well. This competition (at World Finals) will be no exception,” said Mace. “They have already learned so much! I am hopeful that they will continue to grow in their problem solving and team work skills. I also hope they’ll have a great time meeting others from around the country and the world.”
Mace hopes this experience helps them to continue to build feelings of self-efficacy and confidence.
“This is a phenomenal group of young people. They are gracious competitors - building friendships with those they beat and those that beat them. They listen to and learn from one another. They are great people to have in our school district and our community. I am excited to see all that they accomplish as they move out into the ‘real world,’” said Mace.
The Kutztown Elementary School Odyssey of the Mind team also competed at the state competition, placing 7th. The KES team members are Klara Schnore, Egan Sewall, Eli Schlappich, Hayden Schlappich, Trent Simmons, Jack Moriarity, and Ramona Slabonik. They were coached by Annie Schnore, Scott Hand, and KU student, Alli Britt.
Both of these teams competed with their solution to the following problem, “Animal House: Over the years, Odyssey of the Mind teams have designed structures that changed into many unbelievable shapes and sizes that balanced and held as much weight as possible. This year, teams will turn their balsa wood structures into animals! Since animals need to eat, they must be fed. The structure will have its appearance transformed and explained during an original performance. During the performance, the structure must hold the team-created food while it supports weights,” .https://www.odysseyofthemind.com/2018-long-termproblem-synopsis/
Mace explained that the structures that the teams built were made of balsa and glue and weighed around 15 grams, which is about the same weight as a pencil. The High School team structure held 875 pounds before breaking and the Elementary School team structure held 185 pounds before breaking.
Fundraising has begun to send the High School team to Iowa in May. To make a contribution, go to GoFundMe page: https:// www.gofundme.com/kutztownodyssey.
The Kutzown High School Odyssey of the Mind placed 2nd at the state competition and advance to the World Finals. Team members are Porter Holt, Kiana Haring, Asher Cooper, Nathan Hayduk, Emma Kyle, Julia Mace, and Madison Wolf.