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OCMS team heads to nationals

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Two teams from Oldham County middle schools excelled at the regional Future City Competition Jan. 20 at the University of Kentucky, including a team that will compete at the national competition later this month.

The Future City Competition is a national, project-based learning experience where middle school students imagine, design and build cities of the future. Students work as a team with an educator and engineer mentor to plan cities using SimCity software, research and write solutions to an engineering problem, build tabletop scale models with recycled materials and present their ideas before judges at regional competitions in January. Regional winners represent their region at the national finals in Washington, D.C., in February.

The OCMS eighth grade team placed first in the region, defeating 25 other teams to earn a trip to the national competition. The eighth grade team presented a scale model of their city and were scored on their model and their presentation, and along with their previously submitted essay, narrative and virtual city. The team consists of Alli Florence, Patrick Schaller, Alicia Edds, Kacey Smekrud, Anna Ripley and Tabitha Charter.

On Feb. 6, the team presented to a group of parents, district administrators and board of education members, to rehearse their presentation. Their project focused on developing a moon-based settlement called Apollo, including how supplies would arrive, how residents would travel throughout the settlement, and how they would breathe.

The OCMS sixth and seventh grade teams also performed well, with the sixth graders in ninth place and seventh graders in sixth place.

An eighth grade team from EOMS also garnered recognition, placing first in the essay component of the competition. Morgan Jemtrud, Aubrey Wirth and Ellie Reed proposed a solution to future transportation concerns that focused on using water as an alternative fuel source for taxis and a magnet-driven subway system. In their essay, they argued that both options would be environmentally sustainable and give all citizens better accessibility.

Two other teams from EOMS finished in seventh and 14th.

The national competition is Feb. 15-19 in Washington, D.C.

–Submitted info