On to states they go!

On to states they go!

Williamsport Area School District sent eight Odyssey of the Mind teams to Berwick recently. The teams competed in the regional Odyssey of the Mind competition, which is a creative problem-solving competition.

“Competition is the best part! It’s nerve wracking but also exciting,” Carlee Weber said.

When the WASD teams arrived at Berwick, they had to get all their props for a skit ready to go in the hallways of the school.

First, the teams performed a skit. Then they participated in Spontaneous. During this time, the teams are given a problem and a couple minutes to think about solutions and respond. At the end of the day, the awards were announced. The teams were scored on a scale by judges with the overall score out of 200 points.

They also had an opportunity to participate in Tribunal. When a team gets their score sheet and sees that they didn’t earn any points in a category, they can go to Tribunal. The teams go in front of the judges and explain why they feel they should’ve been awarded points. Then the judges decide whether or not to award points.

There were two high school teams that went to Regionals. One team competed in the Classics problem and one in the Vehicle problem. The Classics team builds a skit around a piece of art or fiction. A high school Classics team member, Daisy LeBlanc, explained what she enjoys most about Odyssey of the Mind, “You can do anything with creativity, teamwork and a little bit of Duct tape.”

The Vehicle team builds a tiny car, like a go-cart, and a skit is created around the actions of the car. Paige Diabelko, a member of the high school Vehicle team, enjoys the challenge of building a car, “Once the car works, all the pieces fall into place and you see all your hard work come together.”

The high school’s coach is Spring Moore who has been involved with the program for 27 years.

“I started coaching when my son Max decided to join,” Moore said. “I volunteered to co-coach, hoping it would give him the same creative outlet, competitive opportunities, lifelong friends, and memories it afforded me.”

All eight WASD teams are moving to the state competition. Five of the teams took first place and three placed second. The next round of competition is April 6 at the Pocono Mountain East High School.

“I’m very proud of how far our district has come and am very excited to continue to be a part of this international competition,” Moore said.

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