Tournament Of Minds
Pictured above is the DMS/ DHS Team with their 2nd Place Medallions
Tournament of Minds (TOM) is a problem solving program for teams of students from both primary and secondary years. They are required to solve demanding, open-ended challenges in Science and Technology, Engineering and Mathematics, Social Sciences and Language and Literature. TOM gives students with a passion for learning, problem solving and the performing arts an opportunity to demonstrate their skills by presenting them with challenges on the above disciplines.
The teams are required to work together on a Longer Term Challenge for six weeks without assistance from teachers, parents or peers. Students then present the product of their ideas - their challenge solution - to a panel of judges and an audience. The Darwin Middle School/ Darwin High School (DMS/ DHS) Team competed at the NT Regional Final at Charles Darwin University on September 17th, against teams from other NT Secondary Schools. They were given just ten minutes and a 3 metre by 3 metre performance area to deliver their presentation. The teams must also participate in a Spontaneous Challenge on Tournament Day. This challenge requires rapid interchange of ideas, the ability to think creatively and well developed group cooperation skills.
Pictured Back row – Max Hollis (yr 8), Andre Price – Quintner (yr 9), Oliver Zimmermann (yr 7), Gabrielle Christie (yr 7), Chantelle Furmanow (yr 7), Ruby Surtees (yr 8), Michael Neill (yr 10), Kate Hinchliffe (yr 10), Daniel Youn (yr 10), Ava Wilmore (yr 10).
PicturedFront row – Lucy Van’t Sand (yr 8), Briana Reiniets (yr 7), Harriet Masters-Jones (yr 8), Koko Lawton (yr 8)
Both the Long Term and the Spontaeous Challenges are judged by professionals chosen from all areas of education, the arts and industry. They assess on the teams' creative performance and the technical aspects of their presentation. For the Long Term Challenge, The DMS/ DHS Team had to present a scientifically sound catastrophe that caused the team members to lose their hearing and build a device that allowed them to communicate non-verbally and get the message out that they were survivors. The Spontaneous Challenge is a secret challenge performed only for the judges.
At the end of the NT Regional Final Tournament Day the DMS/ DHS Team was awarded first place, which then qualified them to travel to the Gold Coast for the Australasian Pacific Finals (APF) on Saturday October 15th. The team had three hours to solve another Long Term Challenge and prepare a ten minute presentation for the judges, as well as solve another Spontaneous Challenge. In this Long Term Challenge, they had to create another catastrophe that was about to affect Earth and build a machine that would signal the start of the event. They did an outstanding job and were awarded Honours (2nd Place) in their division of Science Technology, competing against teams from every state and territory around Australia as well as New Zealand and Thailand. They are only the third team from the NT to ever place at the APF.
In addition to their 2nd place the DMS/ DHS also won the TOM Spirit Award. This award is judged over the whole weekend and was awarded to only two teams across the whole competition. To win the Spirit Award, a team must display great attitude, sportsmanship and participation throughout the tournament. The DMS/ DHS team were awarded the Spirit Award for staying back and helping the jugdes clean up the competition rooms after everyone had left, for actively involving and engaging the audience in their presentations, for thanking the judges for their time and for cheering on the competitors.
DMS Teacher and DMS/ DHS TOM Team Leader, Tegan Burness said that they were fantastic ambassadors for our schools and I had more people than I can count come up to me and say how fantastic our students were and how they were extremely deserving of the Spirit Award. I am very proud of how they conducted themselves!
Congratulations on your achievement to the DMS/ DHS Team: Michael Neill, Ava Wilmore, Kate Hinchliffe and Daniel Youn. TOM is one of the fastest growing inter-school programmes and is now expanding internationally, an exciting prospect for future DHS teams.