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November 2009

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From:
Sonya Shaver <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Sonya Shaver <[log in to unmask]>
Date:
Wed, 11 Nov 2009 16:46:10 -0500
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I don't recall if anyone ever told me this or not, but our team did
introduce themselves as both a team and individually.  It just seemed to
make sense to do it.

I actually like that the kids' presentations are private.  I think there is
a lot of pressure in other areas, especially the robot table, and having an
opportunity to present their research to a panel is a good opportunity.
 It's kind of like presenting your work at a meeting of colleagues.

Sonya Shaver
Team 193
Nanobots

On Wed, Nov 11, 2009 at 11:26 AM, Kathleen Wakeman <[log in to unmask]>wrote:

> I too would love it if the teams could see the other projects. I think it
> would really spur their creativity and set a mark for excellence for the
> next year. Re the introductions: we didn't get a checkmark for that even
> though our team did introduce themselves (team, school, town), which made me
> wonder: are individual teammember introductions desired?
>
> Kathy Wakeman
> Mindstorm Marauders
> On Wed, Nov 11, 2009 at 9:35 AM, Linda Bangert <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>
>> Hi All,
>>
>> I would like to add the thanks of Team WNANF (We Need A Name Fast) to the
>> others who have chimed in about the Newport News tournament.  We are a
>> rookie team, and had a few surprises in how things were done, but the
>> scheduling went very smoothly, the rooms were easy to find and centrally
>> located, and folks were gracious and professional.  Well done!
>>
>> I'll pass along the things that surprised us, in the hope it can help
>> others.  I hope I'm not spilling any secrets.
>>
>> One of the things our team got feedback on the sheets as a weakness was
>> "No introductions to judges." Although our team handed the judge the Team
>> Information sheet, no one told us that it was standard procedure to
>> introduce themselves as well.  Talking to an experienced coach friend, he
>> said they forgot to tell this year's team to do that, even though they had
>> remembered to tell their previous teams.
>>
>> The team was also surprised in the robot judging to be asked to run the
>> robot while they answered questions.  Even though this is a middle school
>> team, several members are shy, and had a hard time listening to and coming
>> up with coherent answers to the judges' questions while they were also
>> trying to run the robot - definitely something we need to practice.
>>
>> After reading the comments here last week (at 10:30 p.m. the night before
>> our tournament) about needing to bring a "code book" with photos of the
>> robot with all the attachments and printouts of the programs, I was in a
>> panic, particularly since my printer was out of ink.  We decided to just
>> take our robot and laptop to show the programs.  Although bringing our robot
>> to the robot judging may seem obvious, it wasn't to this rookie coach,
>> particularly after reading about needing to bring photos.  Finally, even
>> though some team members said, "We can show you in our program what we did,"
>> the judges didn't want to look at their programs at all.  (Glad I didn't go
>> on a midnight expedition for printer ink!)
>>
>> As a final suggestion, I would have liked to have the team see the other
>> teams' presentations, in order get ideas on what worked and what didn't.
>>  This is allowed (with students as young as 3rd grade) in Odyssey of the
>> Mind, and the kids learn a lot from each other.  The format is very much the
>> same - using classrooms for the presentations.  When the room is full,
>> that's it, so teams would have to be judicious about sending only a couple
>> of members to not take up too much space.
>>
>> Perhaps a "What to Expect" few paragraphs would be helpful, either posted
>> on the VA/DC website or e-mailed to the coaches when they register for a
>> tournament.  This should help new coaches, and also serve as a checklist for
>> the experienced coaches.  To put everything in perspective, none of these
>> things hurt us much, as we did qualify for State, but it was stressful for
>> the team members.  Even so, they had a great time.  Thanks again!
>>
>> Linda Bangert
>> Coach for Team WNANF
>> Poquoson Middle School
>>
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