Breaking all records previously set, 14 Rockford teams competed at the state finals on Davenport University’s campus against the brightest and most creative students in Michigan. Teams traveled from all over Michigan to compete, from Suttons Bay to Brighton, and creative teams converged to compete for the top two places that will reward them with a trip to the world finals competition in late May. All 14 Rockford teams that competed placed seventh or above. The Roguewood, Cannonsburg and Parkside elementary teams received Honorable Mention status, while the Cannonsburg Elementary and two teams from North Rockford Middle School both received bronze medals for a third-place finish. The teams who will represent Rockford at the world finals are: three teams North Rockford Middle School, two teams from East Rockford Middle School, and two teams from Rockford High School. In addition, two Rockford teams received the highly coveted Ranatra Fusca award which, if chosen, will automatically advance a team to the next level. Cannonsburg Elementary School and Rockford High School each received this award, boosting the world finals team count to eight. To round out a wonderfully, creative, sunny and successful day, two senior Odyssey alumni received the Michigan Odyssey of the Mind scholarship. Congratulations go to Evanne Zainea and Alexis Lawton. Congratulations also go to all the hardworking Odyssey of the Mind teams, coaches and parents, who represented Rockford successfully. They are wished the best of luck at the world finals competition in May.
Roguewood Elementary School
SCHOOL BEAT When do kids learn to think for themselves? by DOUG HOOGERLAND, Principal Roguewood Elementary School When is it really that kids learn to think? Not just the academic variety either, but to actually think for themselves? And how do we provide opportunities for our children to do just that: think for themselves? Don’t get me wrong, we have some extremely bright kids in our area, kids who are among the smartest in the state. We have hundreds of students who are on the honor roll, who are scoring really well on the MEAP and the ACT, and who are earning scholarships to prestigious colleges and universities around the country, but are they really learning how to think for themselves? In many ways, I know I was pretty lucky growing up despite some major challenges. My parents encouraged me to participate in extracurricular activities. When I wasn’t participating in sports or band or 4H or delivering the local newspaper on my bike, I had lots of free time. If my parents had not allowed the concept of boredom in my childhood, who knows how I would have turned out?! Did you catch that? We actually embraced the concept of boredom! Accepting the fact that it was okay to be “bored,” I learned on my own to find something to do; I discovered amazing things. I imagined, I invented, and I played. I thought for myself. My parents weren’t busy planning “play dates” or organizing games for my siblings and me and the neighborhood kids or playing games all that often with me for that matter. My mom was my 4H leader, but after that she made me go outside to play. Certainly I had to follow the rules and “behave,” but I also had to come up with my own plan for occupying my time or “playing.” Perhaps that was one of the best things my parents, however unintentionally, did for me. I learned how to think for myself. I’m certainly not the smartest person, but I’m very confident that placed in a challenging situation or confronted with a difficult problem, I can think for myself and react appropriately to most situations. By education and profession, I am an elementary educator, but at home […]
Rockford teams took plenty of wins in regional competition March 19 at Greenville Middle School. Rockford sent 24 competitive teams and five primary teams—grades kindergarten through second, non-competitive. Advancing to state finals on April 16 at Davenport University are the following. In Division I are the following teams that took first place: Cannonsburg Elementary School Team A, Belmont Elementary School and North Rockford Middle School Team B. Advancing after a second-place win is Roguewood Elementary School Team B. Advancing after a third-place win are Roguewood Elementary School Team A and Cannonsburg Elementary School Team B. Advancing after a fourth-place win is Valley View Elementary School Team A. In Division II, North Rockford Middle School Team A took first, East Rockford Middle School Team B took second and North Rockford Middle School Team C took third. In Division III, Rockford High School took first place. Teams that placed—honorable mention—but will not advance are Crestwood Elementary School, East Rockford Middle School Team A, North Rockford Middle School Team B, Roguewood Elementary School Team B, Crestwood Elementary School and East Rockford Middle School. Four Rockford teams and one Rockford parent also received special awards. John Merchun received an Outstanding OMer award for his volunteering positive attitude. Cannonsburg Elementary School Team B received an Outstanding OMer award for their problem- solving under pressure. North Rockford Middle School Team A received the Coveted Ranatra Fusca award for outstanding creativity, and Roguewood Elementary School Team A received the Ranatra Fusca award for outstanding creativity in their performance. The Odyssey of the Mind teaches students to learn creative problem-solving methods while having fun in the process. By tapping into creativity, and through encouraging imaginative paths to problem-solving, students learn skills that will provide them with the ability to solve problems—great and small—for a lifetime. The Odyssey of the Mind teaches students how to think divergently by providing open-ended problems that appeal to a wide range of interests. Students learn how to identify challenges and to think creatively to solve those problems. They are free to express their ideas and suggestions without fear of criticism. The creative problem-solving process rewards thinking “outside of the box.” Odyssey organizer Linda Blackmore said, “Too often we give our children answers to remember rather than problems to […]
Public invited for a day of family fun The Izaak Walton League of America (the “Ikes”) has had another busy year with many activities at the local Dwight Lydell chapter. The nonprofit conservation club has stayed active in environmental issues at the state and local levels, following their interests in water quality, energy, fishing, hunting, and their love of nature. Some of their members also participate in other groups concerned with Great Lakes fisheries, Asian carp, and the Rogue River watershed. With the Ikes you can be as involved as you want to be, from simply attending dinners, to volunteering, to activist. This past year, 2010, started with an annual event that is just around the corner again: Winterfest! Last year’s was a lot of fun, with ice-fishing and skating at their pond, archery, making candles over an outdoor fire, cross-country skiing, snow castles, and exploring the beauty of nature in the wintertime, plus a free lunch. On Saturday, Jan. 29, 2011, the Ikes will open their gate to the public again, at 5641 Myers Lake Rd., from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The Ikes hold many events that spread their message to the public. Each year they give two $1,000 scholarships to area seniors pursuing careers in an environmental field. A Conservationist of the Year award is given every year at their annual fundraising banquet. An interesting speaker is found, and many great items are collected for a silent auction, which is their main fundraiser for the year. This year’s banquet will be in March, with a program about salmon in Lake Michigan. Fishing is dear to the heart of the group, and they have many days devoted to getting children involved. Every Saturday morning in May they open their pond, supplying gear, bait and advice to those who want to give it a try. On Wednesday evenings from mid-June to mid-July, volunteers bring fishing equipment to the dock at Versluis Lake, helping any kids that meet them there. During the spring and fall, Ikes president Georgia Donovan and vice president Barb McGuirl have an after-school “Kids’ Nature Club,” where kids play and explore outdoors in an unstructured way. The idea is to allow them to feel at home in nature, become familiar with […]
V.I.P. Treatment Students from Sasha Woodard’s second-grade class at Roguewood Elementary School pose with officer Ian Graham at Rockford City Hall in the garage where police keep their vehicles. The kids were wrapping up a Thursday, May 13 tour of City Hall that included the City offices, fire department and police department. The students are part of the Spanish Immersion program at Roguewood and were soon to enjoy lunch at Cinco de Mayo before heading to the Rockford Historical Museum. Officer Graham showed the students where officers keep their street clothes while working, told them how dispatch works, and showed them the equipment that police use, even inviting them to climb right into his patrol car.