Whitehall students in Odyssey contest

 

By Bill Toscano

The props include kilts, a “lei,” a pie, a cane and a mysterious cardboard woman. The play is called “Le Tour Guide.”

And that’s all you’re getting until Saturday.

“We don’t want any pictures yet. We don’t want anyone to see it before the performance,” said Karen Gordon, the librarian at Whitehall Central School and one of the two coaches for the schools Odyssey of the Mind team.

Gordon and speech therapist Sandy James had coached Odyssey teams in the past and rejuvenated the program, sending recruiting notes to all seventh- and eighth-grade students.

They started by explaining Odyssey, an international problem-solving competition, then asking for their participation.

“We had little response, because people didn’t know what it was,” James said.

That led to a concerted recruiting effort that resulted in a team that consists of eighth-graders Victoria Koeble and Chris Talbert and seventh-graders Dylon Morrill, Haley Wiskoski, Abby Dickinson, Emma Whalen and Matt Austin.

“We started talking to teachers, trying to find good kids who had talent,” she said. “We wanted them here, yes.”

And now the students have little trouble talking about Odyssey of the Mind.

“You do things,” Whalen said.

“It’s about gathering with all our friends,” said Koeble.

“It’s a club where you solve problems, short-term and long-term,” Wiskoski said.

When asked what they’ve learned from planning for the competition, one student said, “Patience,” and another quickly added “Lots of patience.”

Each team chooses a long-term problem to prepare for presentation. Some teams are doing “Extreme Mousemobiles,” “As Good as Gold . . . berg,” “Full Circle” or “Unhinged Structure.”

Whitehall is among seven Division II schools doing “Le Tour Guide.”

The teams also have to do a spontaneous problem-solving as well.

BOCES sponsors the competition in Washington and five other counties, and there are 46 teams registered for Saturday’s multi-division competition at Hudson Falls High School.

Whitehall’s spontaneous competition is at 12:21 a.m. and its long-term problem, “Le Tour Guide,” is at 11:50 a.m. They will be competing against Stillwater, Greenwich, Glens Falls, Hudson Falls, Galway and Ballston Spa. Top teams advance to the state competition in March 26 in Binghamton, and top state teams go on to the World competition in Baltimore.

The Whitehall students had to make their own sets, props and costumes. They wrote the script themselves, and Talbert wrote a song for the play. They got special consultation from James’ aunt, Mary Millington, who was visiting from Scotland and helped the students work on their Scottish accents.

They have been working together at least twice a week since October and three times over vacations, including this past week.

It all comes together Saturday, and we’ll finally find out what the props are all about.

Comments

comments

Read more in this week's Times in newsstands now or click here to read right now with our e-edition.

Tags: ,

Routes 18, 21 will be ‘much better’ when done

Roadwork

By Dan King If you’ve driven down county Route 18 or 21 recently, you know the road is under repair. […]

District close to finishing slate of projects

school (2)

By Krystle S. Morey The school is on the cusp of finishing up three major capital projects it began earlier […]

Trump, Long win Tea Party poll

20160826_113706

By Dan King It was a good week for the Republican Party at the Washington County Fair. Each election year, […]

Defending champs open at Helderberg Valley

Whitehall Football

By Dan King It’s football season, and the Whitehall Railroaders are hoping to build on the momentum from last year’s […]

Classifieds 08/31/16

North Country Freepress – 08/26/16

Lakes Classifieds – 08/26/16

Northshire Freepress – 08/26/16

Lakes Region Freepress – 08/26/16

Weekender – 08/26/16

Excitement continues at the Washington County Fair

fair go round

By Dan King and Krystle S. Morey Holy smokes! The final days of the fair are here already! The Washington […]

Shoppers’ ‘points’ can help schools get tools

art sci dog fish cut up web

By Krystle S. Morey Granville residents can earn free supplies, musical instruments and playground equipment for their school simply by […]