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Kingsbury students shine at regional competition

Kingsbury Middle School’s Destination Imagination state championship roster is a long one.

More than 30 middle school students, joined by three of Whittell High School’s finest, earned first, second or third place rankings March 3 at the Destination Imagination/Odyssey of the Mind regional competition.

In conjunction with Odyssey of the Mind, Destination Imagination is a worldwide organization that fosters creative problem solving at elementary, junior high and high school levels. A sort of mental Olympics, the program emphasizes team work and innovative thinking.



The top three teams in each challenge are going to Reed High School in Sparks March 28 to compete in the state competition.

Incredible Tech Effects



Kingsbury Middle School students Jared Duffy, Ben Seelbinder, Jared Nau, Russell Guajardo, Marco Barrrientos and Nick Feldman clenched first place at regionals in the Incredible Tech Effects challenge, pulling in a perfect score.

“The most fun part was just finally completing our stuff,” Feldman said. “And winning first place was certainly fun.”

Requirements for Tech Effects include making something levitate, disappear and reappear. Special effects and a physical change also must also take place.

n Mystery Loves Company

Fifth-graders Nora Esders, Brittany Makara, Megan Alexander, Mac Cerceo, Carter Amaral and Sarah Hartley will compete at the elementary level in Reno in the Mystery Loves Company challenge. This challenge requires students to create a mystery filled with suspense, flush out facts, cover evidence, perform a scientific investigation and construct a communication device.

“Creating a mystery was fun,” Esders said. “We made someone in charge of writing it and people made up their own parts. We’re not as nervous to go to state as we were before with regionals.”

Cerceo played the role of the detective for his team’s challenge skit.

“I liked it because I got to say some funny things,” he said. “I sang opera in the skit. I just projected it. I sang ‘Figaro.’ I’ve heard it before on cartoons.”

Kerry Dunleavy, Siobhan Curley, Cristin Cole, Ashley Amaral and Otto Hsiao won the Mystery Loves Company challenge at regionals for the middle school level.

n Anonymously Yours

Kingsbury Middle School fifth-graders Todd Hayes, Tyler Fairbank, Shawnya Worley, Krysta Olsen, Jared McKissock and Kendra Koskin earned a spot at state for their portrayal of Anonymously Yours. They are competing at the elementary school level. This challenge requires teams to choose a real work of art created by an unknown or anonymous artist. Students must make up an original performance telling a story about the unknown artist and how the work of art was born. Time period must also be incorporated.

“We chose the song ‘London Bridge is Falling Down,’ so that’s what we’re doing at state,” Hayes said. “We found out the song is making fun of Henry VIII. I played Henry VIII and the girls dressed up in like renaissance clothes.”

Ashley Makara, Katie Komorowski, Cassie Van Deusen, Eddie Young and Ashley Hans are also going to Reno to compete in Anonymously Yours at the middle school level.

“The piece of anonymous art we chose was the Sphinx,” Komorowski said. “We saw a picture of the Sphinx and we thought it would be kind of cool. Our skit took place in the Egyptian culture.”

DInamic Improv

Kingsbury students Megan Lowe, Sasha Silver, Brian Hanshew and Emilie Esders teamed with Whittell students Colin Stromberg, Michael Komorowski and Kyle Olsen and secured a state position for their DInamic Improv performance. Teams must research 12 famous innovators, 12 cultural performers and 12 important world landmarks. They incorporate one of each category into an improvisational skit during the competition but do not know which items they will develop into a performance until the tournament.

Mac Cerceo said Destination Imagination promotes a different way of thinking.

“I think it bursts your creativity and it’s based on having the kids do it by themselves so that’s kind of fun,” he said.


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