Middle School Competitions

AT&T Virtual Classroom
The Contest is a web site design competition for teams of students from all over the world. Each

team or "virtual classroom" consists of students and teachers from three different schools in three
different countries. Teams collaborate on projects as varied as creating a multimedia newspaper,
writing a "round robin" story, or planning a colony on Mars. Students plan, write, produce and
program the web site. Open to elementary, junior and senior high school students.

Bayer/NSF Award for Community Innovation
A team will identify a community problem, look into it, come up with an innovative solution, refine

the solution and have fun doing it! Grades 6 through 8. www.nsf.gov/bayer-nsf-award.htm

Duracell Scholarship Competition
Duracell Scholarship Competition: Students create and invent items that use batteries. Some the

items that the students have built include page turners (2nd place United States), Automatic Post -
It Note (2nd Place United States) and an Alarm Clock for the Blind (3rd Place in the United States).
Students may work in teams of two or alone. Grades 6 - 8. www.dupont.com

Knowledge Master Open
The Knowledge Master Open is a curriculum based quiz bowl competition. Two hundred

challenging question that require higher level thinking skills covering fourteen different curriculum
areas are presented to the students. The competition is designed to stimulate enthusiasm for learning
and recognition for academic accomplishment. The contest runs on classroom computers to allow
all students the opportunity to compete in a large academic event without the expense of traveling to
a central site. http://www.greatauk.com

NASA Student Involvement Program
NASA Science Involvement Program: The NASA Student Involvement Program (NSIP) is a

national program consisting of investigations and design challenges. NSIP links students directly
with NASA's diverse and exciting missions of research, exploration, and discovery. By participating
in these competitions and learning activities, students design space missions, investigate Earth from
space, explore Earth systems in their neighborhood, and learn about the latest developments in
aeronautics, and Earth and space exploration. NSIP is a wonderful opportunity for students to learn
science by doing science. Grades 3 - 12. www.nsip.net

Odyssey of the Mind
The Odyssey of the Mind School Program fosters creative thinking and problem-solving skills

among participating students from kindergarten through college. It features an annual competition
component at local through international levels. Students solve problems in a variety of areas --
from building mechanical devices such as spring-driven vehicles to giving their own interpretation
of literary classics. Through solving problems, students learn lifelong skills such as working with
others as a team, evaluating ideas, making decisions, and creating solutions while also developing
self-confidence from their experiences. The OM Association also develops activities to integrate
these skills into regular classroom curricula. Grades K - college. www.odyssey.org

Science Olympiad
Science Olympiad Regional: Each team of 15 will prepares to compete in Science Olympiad

tournaments held on local, state and national levels. These inter-scholastic competitions consist of
a series of 32 individual and team events that encourage learning in biology, earth science,
chemistry, physics, problem solving and technology. Events in the Science Olympiad have been
designed to recognize the wide variety of skills that students possess. While some events require
knowledge of scientific facts and concepts, others rely on science processes, skills or applications.
This ensures that everyone can participate, including students from technology classes or advanced
science classes. All events involve teamwork, group planning and cooperation. That is the real
essence of the Science Olympiad. Our emphasis is on advanced learning in science through active,
hands-on, group participation. Through the Olympiad, students, teachers, coaches, principals,
business leaders and parents bond together as a team working toward a common goal. The events
for middle/junior high school this year are: Battery Buggy, Bio Process Lab, Bottle Rocket, Don't
Bug Me, Earth, Sea and Sky, Experimental Design, Fossils, Mission Possible, Mystery
Architecture, Nature Quest, Naked Egg Drop, Pentathlon, Physical Science Lab, Propeller
Propulsion, Reach for the Stars, Road Scholar, Science Crime Busters, Science of Fitness,
Surfing the Net, Trajectory, Water Quality, What are you trying to tell me? and Write It, Do It.

Toshiba Exploravision
ExploraVision is a competition for students of all interest, skill, and ability levels in grades K­12.

The purpose of the competition is to encourage students to combine their imaginations with the
tools of science to create and explore a vision of a future technology. To prepare an entry, students
work in groups of three or four, simulating Research and Development (R&D) teams, along with
a teacher advisor and an optional community advisor. Each team selects a technology, or an aspect
of a technology that is present in the home, school, and/or community or any other technology
relevant to their lives. For example, they may choose something as simple as a pencil or as complex
as a CD-ROM. They will explore what it does, how it works, and how, when, and why it was
invented. The students must then project into the future what that technology could be like 20 years
from now. Finally, they must convey their vision to others through both a description and
storyboard (a series of scenes from a would-be video). Grades K - 12

The purpose of the competition is to promote the Internet Style of Learning - an interactive,

participatory style that encourages students to take advantage of the Internet as a constantly
growing source of information and as a powerful collaborative tool. Students work in teams of up
to three students to create web sites for the use of other students. Ages 12 - 19.
ThinkQuest Junior
ThinkQuest Junior is a program that engages the strong interest of younger students in computers

and the Internet. It gives them and their teachers a structure for integrating computers and the
"Internet Style" of learning into their everyday lives. Launched in 1997, ThinkQuest Junior is for
girls and boys to work together in teams of up to six students. Coached by their teachers, teams
build Web-based educational materials. Grades 4 - 6. www.thinkquest.org

Young Inventors Awards Program
The Young Inventors Awards Program is open to all students in grades 3-5 and 6-8 in the United

States and the U.S. Territories. Students must work independently to conceive and design their
tool inventions. The student, with guidance from a teacher-advisor, parent, or significant adult, will
design and build a tool. The tool must perform a practical function, including (but not limited to)
tools that mend, make life easier or safer in some way, entertain, or solve an everyday problem.
Students must send in the completed form (signed by the student, parent, and teacher-advisor),
Inventor's Log (must be 3-7 pages in length), diagram of the tool, and a photograph of the student
demonstrating the tool. . Grades 3- 5 and 6 - 8. www.nsta.org/programs/craftsman.htm