For the past couple months in our Maker classroom at school, coming from my group’s general direction you would have seen and heard a giant egg being drilled together, covered in cardboard, and painted. You would have heard us rehearsing our lines in origami hippos masks and light up shirts. You would have been able to feel the thickness of urgency and teamwork in the air when you step into the room. That could only mean one thing…… Destination Imagination….. Regional tournament.
Basically, DI is a huge, world-wide tournament that brings students and and teachers together to show off their creativity by performing solutions to creative challenges. These challenges come in several different categories including these 5:
THE SCIENTIFIC CHALLENGE: MEDICAL MYSTERY
THE FINE ARTS CHALLENGE: GAME ON
THE TECHNICAL CHALLENGE: ON TARGET
THE ENGINEERING CHALLENGE: MONSTER EFFECTS
THE IMPROVISATION CHALLENGE: HEADS UP
In our class, we split in to groups of four or five and were given one of these 5 different categories to create a solution for.
My group members included Lucy, Fraser, Kyle, Jackson, and me! We received (drumroll please) The Fine Arts Challenge, GAME ON. Here is a short video describing our challenge cause videos are fun!! And then I need to get started telling you about how we solved this whole thing by March 6th, the day of the regional tournament because A LOT of work went into our solution, trust me.
Our class used the creative process to find a solution which follows these steps:
In this stage we did nothing but read over our challenge until we knew it like the back of our hand. We completed forms about each important component of our challenge and there are quite a few (the containers the game gizmo, the technical element, etc.) which you discovered in the video up above. I focused a lot on the game component and created this form:
Every one in our group completed one form which really determined what each person would be working on through out the months to come. We did a few other small things but I will talk more about them later. I discovered it is very very important to know your challenge before you start thinking of ideas. I remember when we were first assigned Game On, I had this whole extravagant idea that I was going to tell everybody. And then I read the handbook. Not many of my ideas worked with the rules and restrictions of the handbook and it can be a bit hard to move on from idea what’s you get so excited about it so before you do any brainstorming, it is a lot easier to just know your challenge.
This stage is probably the most crucial. This is the stage in the creative process when you choose concrete ideas and follow through with them. But before these concrete ideas, all we do is ideate. To make sure that everyone in my group got their ideas out, we used something called Idea Boxes. Every one gets a sheet of paper and fills in all the squares with random ideas and you come out with something that looks a little like this:
I had actually never used Idea boxes before but now after thinking more about them, they are a great way to get ideas out as a group. I think because of them one of everyones ideas probably got finalized and became a concrete idea for our project. From there we created drafts and blueprints for each element of the challenge and our finalized ideas.
We Decided on the Game and started research:
We wrote a first draft of our story
Tested the game gizmo as well as our first team choice element:
Designed what our Container would look like and how the technical element would work:
Decided on our second team* choice element:
*A team choice element is a team chosen object, song, graph, etc that shows of their talents and interests. You have to include 2 in your performance
INITIATE AND COLABORATE
Woooo, already moving on to stage 3. The stage where all the building happens, in my opinion the most fun part but also the most stressful. From all of those ideas and blueprints I showed you up above we had to get moving on the actual building part. My main job was creating the frame of the egg as well as creating the light up shirt aka the second team choice element. Here is a quick video of me working on the frame and Lucy (one of my team memebers) cutting wood:
Cutting and drilling wood together is something I have always felt uncomfortable doing, but thanks to my dad, he showed us how it all works and how to do it safely. Let me make it clear that he did not help us, it was something we did all on our own. We divided up each part so that everyone worked on something until March 6th, the day of regionals. Here is the video of our performance.
Those right there are our raw scores that we got from the appraisers, showing how we did in each element and with those scores, we actually won!! I know right!! But that’s not the end. We still have a ton of work to do by the time provincials comes around. As a team the 3 main things we will work on are the improvement of our egg container, make the team choice elements bigger and better, and incorporate more research into our script. DI (even so far) has been an absolutely life changing experience. It is very rare that you get the opportunity to work with a team creatively to create a performance about the Hungry Hungry Hippos and a magical Jelly Fish teaches them about sharing. I can’t wait to keep improving our performance until provincials, see you guys then!!