Glacier Creek team takes first at DI state

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The DI ACES, a team made up of five sixth-graders from Glacier Creek, took first place in the scientific team challenge at the Wisconsin State Destination Imagination Tournament on Saturday, April 18 at UW-Stevens Point.

The challenge was called "Making Waves." The team is comprised of Arber Jonuzi, Calvin Slinde, Edwin Zhang, Poojha Prabaharasundar and Sohail Shaik. Derren Slinde is the team manager. 

The Making Waves Scientific Challenge is one of seven open-ended challenges that require students to apply science, technology, engineering and math (STEM), in addition to improvisation, theater arts, writing, project management, communication, innovation, teamwork and community service.

Their first-place overall finish qualifies the team for the DI Global Finals competition in Knoxville, Tenn., from May 20-23.

Meanwhile, a team of Kromrey seventh-graders placed first in the Central Challenge and second overall out of 22 teams at the state tournament.

The team, which was called "Those People," competed in the Feary Tales Fine Arts challenge. The Central Challenge told the story of how the ghost of the founder of The Royal Princess Academy used a recorder made out of a carrot to help Duchess Emma overcome her fear of Kathisophobia, or the fear of sitting down.

Team members include Alina Dillahunt (team manager), Maddie Connell, Syd Smith, Moniek Smink, Elena Sacchetti and Julia Compton.

Both teams plan to attend the Global Finals.

A third-grade team from Sunset Ridge finished fourth out of 24 teams in their scientific challenge and just missed qualifying for the Global Finals by a few points, Slinde said. The team was called "Charlie Committed the Crime'' and included Corbin Slinde, Eric Ma, Gabi Tabone, Gia Shah, Jack Dalton and Marishka Castellino. 

A team of third- and fourth-graders from Park competed at state for the first time and finished fifth out of 17 teams in the structural challenge. Participants included  Zack Stoecker, Laina Gustafson, Eli Messer, Kyle Pape, Lydia Schultz, Henry Bohachek, and Jaya Booth. Team managers were Marty Gustafson and Sandy Stoecker.

More than 1,350 teams from throughout the United States and 30 countries, including China, Korea, Singapore, Japan and India, will be competing at Global Finals this year, the largest creative thinking and problem-solving competition in the world.  

Destination Imagination (DI) is a non-profit organization that helps more than 100,000 students each year from around the world discover their creativity and develop lifelong critical thinking and collaborative problem solving skills. Participating countries are using the program to support existing curriculum by teaching participants skills that give them a competitive edge in the future workforce and in life.

For more information about Destination Imagination and Global Finals, please visit their respective websites.