2019 OM World Finals, here we come!

Dear Family and Friends,

This is Heidi Miller.  In the picture, I'm the one on the left next to my sister Hannah. 

We did it again! Our Kensington Elementary *Odyssey of the Mind Team competed at the North Carolina regional and state competitions earning a spot to compete in the 2019 World Finals competition taking place at Michigan State University, May 22-25. Last year we came in 4th place against at least 70 teams from around the world in Division 1, Problem #5.  I can't describe the feeling you get in your stomach when your team's name has been called. The top 6 teams are recognized but only the top three get to rush the stage for a trophy. We were so close! 

This year there will be 900 teams worldwide coming together to compete and earn one of those trophies.  The competition is fierce. Our team is ready to compete but we need your help getting there.

Our team (7 students and 2 coaches) has been working on this year's problem since early September 2018.  Every Monday, Wednesday and Friday we meet after school and on Sundays we meet for 2 to 3 hours. That is nearly 320 hours we have spent trying to solve our problem, writing and rewriting the script, designing the set, building and rebuilding structures, creating costumes, practicing and performing over and over again. That's a lot of hours people! Mom is the coach...she doesn't allow slackers. Lol. We have learned to work with glue guns (and every type of glue you can imagine), hammers, mallets, saws, knives, box cutters, PVC cutters, needles, grommets, paint, trash, foam cutters, drills and lots and lots of duct tape! It's a lot of work but we love it.  We are OMers for life.

Raising money to get there is probably the hardest part of our journey. This year each team member has been challenged to reach out to their friends and family to raise money on their own behalf. This is in addition to selling cookbooks and Auto Bell cards as a team.  

The cost to compete in the 2019 Odyssey of The Mind competition is around $900 per person. 

Competition Room and Board is $595 per person.
Transportation and lodging to and from Lansing Michigan is approximately $300 per person. 

Would you consider helping Hannah and me by donating to our Go Fund Me page? It would mean the "worlds" to us....no pun intended. hehe! Odyssey of The Mind skits are filled with puns.

Thank you so much for your love and support.

Heidi and Hannah Miller

*What is Odyssey of the Mind?

 Odyssey of the Mind, OotM, is a creative problem-solving competition involving students from kindergarten through college. Team members work together at length to solve a predefined problem (the long-term problem); and present their solution to the problem theatrically at the competition. They must also participate in the spontaneous portion of the competition where they generate solutions to a problem they have not seen before.  Students compete at regional, state, and world-wide levels.

 Odyssey of the Mind is the largest problem solving competition in the world and involves teams from nearly every state in the US and approximately 25 countries.  The World Finals now include teams from as far away as China, Germany, Mexico, India and Poland.  Twenty thousand people travel to World Finals – teams, parents, coaches and volunteers; proving that creative thinking is universal and that OotM is the positive force that brings them together.

 Why is it important?

 Odyssey of the Mind engages students in their learning by allowing their knowledge and ideas to come to life in an exciting, productive environment.  Participants build self-confidence, develop life skills, create new friendships, and are able to recognize and explore their true potential through creative problem solving exercises.  From the start, OotM recognized the importance of many of the skills now emphasized in STEM education (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) so critical in today’s technological world. OotM also accentuates history and art and encourages learning these subjects through the Classics and performance problems.
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Amy Higginbotham Miller 
Waxhaw, NC
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