Team Pair-A-Dice head to Destination ImagiNation Global Finals
A team of six eighth-grade girls from Yarmouth, Maine has won the right to represent their state at an international problem-solving competition in Knoxville, Tennessee in May, 2010.
Team Pair-A-Dice, students of Harrison Middle School, has participated in Destination ImagiNation for three years. Destination ImagiNation is the world's largest creative problem-solving program for kids of all ages. The nonprofit helps kids develop teamwork and leadership skills while solving real-life problems. More than 1,200 schools from 40 countries are involved.
These girls created a robot from everyday materials, including parts they found at the dump, and won first place in a challenge that focused on structural engineering, robotic technology, research, technical design, theater and teamwork.
In choosing the robot challenge, “We wanted to step outside of our comfort zone and learn something new,” said team member Lily Daggett, “We wanted to put a new twist on robots because they are always viewed as a very male interest.”
In addition to finishing first regionally for their challenge at the middle school level, this team also won the Renaissance Award, given in recognition of outstanding design, engineering or performance. Only two Renaissance Awards were given out in a field of over 70 teams from all over Maine. The nomination noted:
“For a team that creatively examined the essence of the challenge and built a robotic device from the bottom up, beginning with parts from the dump. Along the way, they tried many engineering solutions before they settled on an innovative approach to a light sensor switching device. The icing on the cupcake was the intricate costuming, set design and story.”
Team member Grace King describes their success, “We're all such good friends, and we aren't afraid to say our ideas, even if they aren't really good ones. Also, we all have different strengths and weaknesses so it is easy to work well as a team and get creative.”
The Pair-A-Dice team members are Lily Daggett, Grace King, Emma Maierhofer, Maddy Maierhofer, Hannah Peters and Emma Peterson.
The team will be fundraising over the next few weeks to help offset the travel costs to Tennessee. Tax-deductible donations can be made payable to “Yarmouth School Department, DI Team #2” and sent c/o Janet King, 78 Boxwood Drive, Yarmouth, ME 04096.
For more information on Destination ImagiNation, visit http://www.idodi.org/ .