2015 Power Point for Parent Meeting

Parent Meeting
All problems have an 8-minute time limit.
Problem 1: Runaway 'Train‘
Divisions I, II, & III
The team’s problem is to design, build and operate one or more vehicles
that will travel on tracks and make stops at different stations without
touching the floor. While traveling between stations, the vehicles must
overcome obstacles —moving uphill, towing something, and more. The theme
of the performance will explain the vehicle’s difficulties on the track and
will include a ‘conductor’ character. Once the vehicle reaches its final
destination it will display a flag or banner during a victory lap!
Cost limit: $145 USD.
Problem 2: Experiencing Technical Difficulties Divisions I, II, III, & IV
The problem is to design, build, and demonstrate various devices that
complete specific tasks. The team will create a theme where technical
failures must be resolved through completing the tasks. There will be a list
of tasks to choose from including ring a bell, change the wording on
something, sound an alarm, move an object, etc. There will also be a
mysterious engineer character. Of course, there’s a twist — all of the
devices must be powered by rubber bands!
Cost limit: $145 USD.
All problems have an 8-minute time limit.
Problem 3: Pandora’s Box
Divisions I, II, III & IV
In this classics problem, teams will put a video game spin on the story of
Pandora’s Box. A gamer character will take on this multi-level game inspired
by the Greek myth. The game will include a prologue that depicts the original
story of Pandora’s Box, three characters representing different evils that
escaped the box, and a power meter that represents the gamer character’s
health. To beat the game, the player will advance to the final level where it
will release hope into the world.
Cost limit: $125 USD.
Problem 4: Lose Your Marbles
Divisions I, II, III & IV
This problem requires teams to design, build, and test a structure, made only
of balsa wood and glue, that will balance and support as much weight as
possible. The structure will also hold five marbles that will be released
during weight placement as a result of a team-created device removing a
piece of the structure. After the crusher board and one additional weight
are placed on top of the structure, the first marble will be released. After
the next weight is supported, the team will use its device to release another
marble, and so on. The team will incorporate weight placement and “losing
your marbles” into the theme of the performance.
Cost limit: $145 USD.
All problems have an 8-minute time limit.
Problem 5: Silent Movie
Divisions I, II, III & IV
Lights, camera...action! In this problem teams will create and present a
performance depicting a Director character that produces and presents a
silent movie featuring a humorous villain character that commits three silly
acts of “villainy”. Characters that are in the movie may not speak as part of
the presentation of the movie. Instead, like classic silent films, the team
will use music played on a team-created instrument and creatively displayed
subtitles to convey its story to the audience and judges. Also, teams will
use a signal to indicate when the movie begins and ends.
Cost limit: $125 USD.
Primary: Wacky Weather Warning
Grades K-2
Teams will create and present a humorous performance where a
meteorologist makes three predictions of “wacky weather”. The
meteorologist will speak in rhymes and use a team-created forecasting
device and a backdrop that serves as a weather map. The community will
“tune in” to get the weather report in any creative way the team wishes.
Cost limit: $125 USD.
Odyssey of the Mind
• Div. I:
• Div. II:
• Div. III:
• Div. IV:
Each team member is less than 13 years of age
OR in grades K-5 on May 1, 2015.
Does not qualify for Div. I AND less than 15
years of age OR in grades 6 through 8 on
May 1, 2015.
Does not qualify for Div. I or II AND each
team member is attending grades 9 through 13
on May 1, 2015.
• Teams consist of up to 7 members.
• Teams may add to the roster until it reaches
7 team members.
• Once a team member has attended a meeting
and has been present during any part of the
solution finding, he/she must remain on the
Problem Selection
• Review problems in which the team is
eligible to compete.
• Have the team members discuss the
pros and cons of each problem.
• Let the team members vote on the
problem they want to solve.
Roles of the Coach
• Facilitate the team without doing the work
for them. Allow the team to make all
decisions regarding the solution.
• Interact with the team to improve the way
the team identifies and solves the problem.
• Make sure all team members are involved in
the process of issue identification, idea
generation, solution finding and solution
Roles of the Coach
• Provide the impetus for the team to
develop strategies, generate ideas,
evaluate options or reach a decision
• Encourage the team to produce fresh
ideas, think “out of the box”, work
cooperatively and develop communication
Roles of the Coach
• Provide a safe environment with no
criticism of team members as they develop
their solution.
• Stay well informed of all problem rules and
program guidelines and pass the
information on to the team members.
• Develop a timeline working backwards from
the competition date.
Long-Term Problems
Statement of the problem
 Problem limitations or rules
Site and set-up conditions
Scoring elements
Long-Term Problems
Six new Long-Term problems are released each year (Sept).
The PROBLEM SYNOPSES briefly describe these:
• Vehicle – Problem 1 “Runaway 'Train‘”
•Technical – Problem 2 “Experiencing Technical Difficulties”
• Classics – Problem 3 “Pandora’s Box”
• Structure – Problem 4 “Lose Your Marbles”
• Theatrical – Problem 5 “Silent Movie”
• Primary – Demonstration Only “Wacky Weather Warning”
• All problems (except Primary) are offered to all age Divisions
• There is a cost limit to each problem (usually ~$135-145)
- therefore solutions cannot be “bought”
- only the materials used in competition included in the cost
- duct tape & cardboard, lawn-sale value, scavenging
- some “standard” and safety items are exempt from cost,
these are listed in Program Guide (page 47-49).
Long-Term Problems
• Teams compete according to Division
• All team members may present the
• Teams often say “time” in a creative
way at the end of their presentation
Must have a clear signal to the judges to
indicate that they have finished
Many problems require teams to present
to the judge how they will signal time
Material Values Form
• one copy for Staging Judge
• includes everything used during
the current LT & Style Presentation
• doesn’t include items used during
practice/trial runs
• garage sale value if used items
• combine value of small items
• exemptions (Program Guide p.49)
• be “creative” in acquiring
materials, the art of scavenging
• cardboard & duct-tape
• even “donations” have value
Long-Term Problems
After the team presents its solution judges
will visit with the team members.
Coaches and parents must stay away during
this important time. (Penalties can be
Encourage teams to tell the judges about
their solution and be proud. This is their
time to shine!
Encourage all team members to visit with
the judges. Tell them that judges do not
like to have one team member “take over”.
Style is an elaboration of the long-term
problem solution designed to encourage
teams to go beyond simply meeting the
requirements by adding creative elements.
 Style category selections should
emphasize elements the team is
particularly proud of
• Costume
• Song
• Scenery
• Poem
Each long-term problem has five Style
1. Mandatory – the problem may require the
membership sign or appearance of one
character but the team may select which
2. Free Choice of Team – the team should
select elements they wish to have scored
as long as they are not already scored in
the long-term scoring for that problem.
3. Overall Effect – this is how all the Style
categories come together to enhance the
Teams will be given a problem to solve
Coaches and spectators may not attend the
spontaneous aspect of the competition.
All teams in a division have the same
Teams must PRACTICE!
Teams will be nervous, the coaches must
help the team relax and focus.
Be prepared, anything goes!
The problems MUST be kept a secret, not
even coaches may be told the problem.
Spontaneous Problems
Verbal – problems that require teams to
respond verbally and rapidly.
Creative or Common responses.
2. Hands-On – problems that require teams
to build or create a solution.
Team effort is rewarded.
3. Verbal/Hands-On – problems combining
both verbal and hands-on components.
Odyssey of the Mind
Long-Term – 200 possible points
Spontaneous – 100 possible points
Style – 50 possible points
Each long-term problem lists penalties.
These are intended to ensure that teams
do not circumvent the rules, present a
safety hazard, cause delays in the
tournament or act inappropriately.
Spirit of the Problem – penalizes teams
attempting to circumvent the intention of the
rules or the problem itself. (-1 to -100 pts.)
Unsportsmanlike Conduct – penalties occur
when teams (including coaches) hurt another
team’s chances, are disruptive, use profanity
and so on.
Outside Assistance – penalties assessed when
a team uses help from someone other than its
members. (-5 to -200 pts.)
• When a question arises for which there appears
to be no written rule the team should submit a
problem clarification request.
• Many problem clarifications are answered with a
reference such as “See B, 3”.
• General rule in Program Guide apply to every longterm problem.
• Clarifications take precedence over limitations
listed in the problem and those take precedence
over the rules in the guide, so it is important that
teams keep current on all general clarifications
issued throughout the year.
• Current clarifications can be found at
Thank You for Coming
Remember to let the kids
have fun on their own!

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