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In Destination Imagination competition, the Micro-Minis Team with Lily Sullivan, from left, Lucy Moultrie, Audrey Fanning, Avery Langston and Danika Nickerson from Mill Creek Elementary School earned first place in Scientific Challenge. CONTRIBUTED

Mill Creek claims top spots at state in Destination Imagination

MADISON – Three teams from Mill Creek Elementary School sailed into top accolades recently in the Destination Imagination State Contest at Discovery Middle School.

“Destination Imagination or DI is an organization that encourages students to work together in teams to solve open-ended Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics or STEAM challenges,” Jacqueline K. Smith said. “Destination Imagination is designed to teach the creative process.”

A National Board Certified Teacher, Smith teaches STEM courses to fifth-graders at Mill Creek. Along with sponsoring DI, she works as Director of the Extended Day Program.

To prepare for the upcoming competition season, the Mill Creek teams started their practice sessions in October 2021. “The teams selected the challenge that they wanted to work on, based on the interests of the group as a whole. They designed their own costumes and sets for the competition,” Smith said.

“Two of our Mill Creek teams placed first and one team placed second at the state Destination Imagination contest,” Smith said.

The Micro-Minis Team with Audrey Fanning, Lucy Moultrie, Avery Langston, Danika Nickerson and Lily Sullivan won first place in the Scientific Challenge. In this category, DI’s Scientific Challenge blends the curiosity of scientific research with the creative expression of performance art.

The Hyper-Imagination Team claimed first-place standing in the Engineering category. Team members are Ananya Bhovi, Zach Hossler, Shade Opiniano, Krish Jain, John Kawamoto, Noah Mikolaschek and Nirvan Nagapuri.

“Students in the Hyper-Imagination Team won the Da Vinci Award for outstanding creativity and using a unique approach to find a solution to their challenge,” Smith said.

Destination Imagination officials state that imagination, creativity, originality and courage are required to solve DI Challenges. DI honors individuals and teams who most clearly demonstrate that spirit of adventurous risk in their solutions — those who most creatively traveled to reach new and unique destinations. The DaVinci Award is named to honor one of humanity’s greatest creative thinkers, Leonardo Da Vinci. (destinationimagination.org)

The Crazy Critters Team included Sydney Svendson, Kyndall Carter, Khloe Glanzer, Kamryn Govan, Jillian Nolan, Lydia Hosmer and Shravan Balaji. These Mill Creek students rated in second place in the Fine Arts category. For this category, a team must create and present a flipped tale that is inspired by a well-known story but focuses on a new main character.

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