Students ‘DIscover’ new adventures in learning
Connor Strait, a fourth-grader at Kathryn Senor Elementary School, made a fortunate mistake Saturday: He forgot one of his lines on stage at the Destination Imagination regional tournament at Rifle High School. “I didn’t mean to do this, but I forgot to say, ‘I can’t stand their cuddly cuteness,’ ” Connor said.”It’s a good thing you didn’t say it, Connor,” said Kayla Anthony, Connor’s teammate and classmate. “We would have run out of time.”
The competition Kayla and Connor participated in was carefully timed. Their team, the Wild Wombats, gave a riveting radio performance in front of a live studio audience and three judges at the Destination Imagination regional tournament at Rifle High School. The team had exactly eight minutes to tell a complete story, interrupt the regularly scheduled programming with a breaking news story – which they had only one minute to discuss before the performance – and air a creative commercial.Destination Imagination is a creative problem-solving competition for students between third grade and high school, said Terrie Lapka, a Rifle Middle School parent and the regional DI coordinator.
The Wild Wombats competed in the “Live! It’s RaDIo DI!” challenge. Teams could choose one of six different challenges to perform. The other challenges included: “DIzzy Derby,” “Sudden SerenDIpity,” “IMPROVing Along,” “DIsigning Bridges,” and “More to the Story.” Team members were also sent into a private room and given a specific problem to solve in a creative way as part of the “instant challenge” event. Teams tallied their points from both the instant challenge and the team event to determine a regional winner.Thirty-five teams from the Western Slope region, which stretches from Copper Mountain to the Utah border and from Ouray to the Wyoming border, qualify for the state tournament at the University of Denver on April 30.The Wild Wombats met every Wednesday afternoon to practice and prepare. Last year the team placed third at the regional tournament.
“At state we were seventh out of, like, 30 million other teams,” said fourth-grader Eileen Klomhaus. Nearly every member of the Wild Wombats returned to the team this year. Only fourth-grader Scott Hayden was new to the crew.”The girls were all friends,” said Darcie Anthony, Kayla’s mother and one of the team leaders. “They got the guys they knew to join. We’re just here to monitor and ask questions.”This year the Wild Wombats finished in fifth place at the regional tournament.
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