LEAVITTSBURG – Makayla Scruggs had candle safety in mind when she decided to design it “Kareful Kandle” produced for a class project last year.
Makayla, an eighth-grade LaBrae student, didn’t expect to be in the top 8 students in her area with one of the best designs, or to earn an honorable mention in the state-level education program. 2020-21 Worldwide Invention Convention for Kindergarten to Grade 12 students.
“It was a surprise. I just wanted to come up with a concept to make the use of candles safer,” she explained. “But it really gets you thinking about a problem or a need that someone might have and how to find a solution. And the key is whatever the problem is, keep trying to fix it until you do.
Originally, 13 of Debbie Morgan’s students submitted prototypes, journals, billboards, and presentations to the Northeastern Ohio Regional portion of the contest.
Several of these students advanced to the 28th Ohio Invention Convention. They were the only Trumbull County students named finalists for the NE Ohio Invention Convention.
LaBrae’s Liam Fiest, also a grade eight student, also received an honorable mention.
“The concepts proposed by the students were incredibly creative and unique” explained Morgan, a gifted ELA teacher at LaBrae middle and middle schools. “They based them on the problems they perceive and the means to solve those problems.”
For example, a student designed a tool for stacking books on a shelf for people who have back problems or who cannot reach the shelves on the upper level. Another created a blanket to protect trees from lightning strikes.
Liam’s “Grilling in butter” takes on the challenges of buttering toast, basically, without doing any damage or “spoil the toast” he explained. A student’s prototype demonstrates how to use an external device similar to a thermometer to determine an individual’s allergies.
The Invention Convention is designed to teach students problem identification, problem solving, entrepreneurship and creative skills, and to build confidence in invention, innovation and entrepreneurship. According to a press release from the LaBrae District, Convention of Invention programs are taking place at the school, local, regional, and national levels in the United States and in a growing number of countries around the world.
The Ohio finalists were announced last month in a virtual ceremony.
This year’s event took place virtually, via video submission. Once students identified a problem, they used the design cycle to research and develop a prototype. They then presented solutions to more than 140 industry professionals. Their innovations solved problems across multiple categories including health and medicine, safety, animal care, and household improvements.
The annual competition is supported by major technology sponsors, including national finals title partner Honda.
Over $ 21,000 in 529 Plan Savings Awards from CollegeAdvantage Ohio, of the Ohio Tuition Trust Authority, have been awarded.
The LaBrae NE Ohio region finalists for the 2020-21 school year are:
• 7th grade (now in 8)
Liam Fiest and Makayla Scruggs, honorable mention; and Ryan Simunich
• 5th year (now in 6th year)
• 4th year (now in 5th year)
• 3rd year (now in 4th year)