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Creativity News - Volume 8, Number 4 (11/01/2014)


Team Manager Training

MTDI will be holding a Team Manager training on Saturday, November 8, from 9AM - Noon at Fire Station #3 in Bozeman. This training will cover how to approach solving the Central Challenge, basic tips for solving Instant Challenges, what is Interference, and how to access online training resources. Even if you are still considering forming a team you should attend the training.

If you are like most new Team Managers, the thought of teams of children working together to solve complex challenges all on their own sends cold shivers down your spine. Team Manager Training can put most of your worries to rest as you realize that as Team Manager you have the power to set limits with your team. Most importantly, Team Manager Training gives in depth instructions on how you, as a Team Manager, can facilitate your team to success without worry of Interference. In fact, Destination ImagiNation offers tools for almost any scenario that can take place during the team’s journey to a solution. Team Managers learn how to help the team generate ideas and then focus the best ideas into a solution. Training also covers Instant Challenges and how to practice so the team is ready for any challenge the IC appraisers give them. Finally, Team Manager training covers team building exercises to help your group of students become a solid super team!

If you are not able to attend the Team Manager Training in person, contact the Affiliate Director to receive an invitation to join the training via webinar. You are also invited to attend any other Team Manager Training if you just happen to be in the neighborhood. See the list of TM trainings in the right side panel.

Get a Visual!

New Teams and their Team Managers are often clueless as to what a DI Challenge solution looks like so thank goodness for YouTube! Hundreds of teams have not been able to resist showing off their performances on YouTube. Start your own search with “Destination ImagiNation…”  Add the name of a team, prior challenge or affiliate and come up with lots and lots of performances and activities. You can find a list of past challenges on the MTDI website in the list of challenge previews. Remember, your team may not “copy” challenge solutions but may take several ideas and rework them to fit their own challenge solutions. As you watch them also notice that set up time is part of the total time allowed.

Six Basic Principles for Creative Problem Solving

The following ideas for the six "ground rules" for creative problem solving were taken from Creative Problem Solving: The Basic Course by Scott Isaksen and Donald Treffinger. Team Managers may wish to apply these "ground rules" when working with their teams.

  1. Keep the mind open to all possibilities by not squelching or inhibiting the free flow of ideas. In other words, do not cut a student short who seems at first to have an "off-the-wall" idea.
  2. Come up with many ideas and do not worry about their quality.
  3. Entertain all ideas no matter how strange, wild, or silly they may seem.
  4. Do not be lazy in thinking. Extend your students to near their limits in thinking.
  5. Incubate the ideas by setting them aside for a period of time.

"Piggy back" or "hitch-hike" the ideas with each other. One student's idea may be the impetus for a different student to come up with an even better idea or solution.

Favorite Costumes

Don't let your team wait to consider how it will create its costume. Great costumes often take time to create. Take time now to remember the fun Halloween costumes you saw this year. Also check out the DI blog on Costumes at the DI website.

MTDI Scholarship

Each year Montana Destination Imagination budgets to award two $500 scholarships to Montana students who have participated for at least 2 years in Destination Imagination. The scholarships are awarded to a high school senior and a student currently pursuing a post-secondary degree. The MTDI scholarship is not a traditional essay application. We ask the applicants to create a marketing or training tool to help further Destination Imagination in Montana. If you think you know a student who will be eligible for this scholarship please encourage them to look at the topics on the scholarship page on the MTDI website. Also send us the contact information for these students so we can also remind them about the scholarship.  Summer is a great time for them to work on this application.

RULE OF THE MONTH: Interference and Acquiring Materials

Use the following guidelines when gathering materials:

a. Your team may create a list of specific items and ask a non-team member to obtain those items for your team’s use.

b. When purchasing a specific amount of a raw material for use in your solution (such as a piece of fabric or a sheet of plywood), your team may ask the store to cut the material to a specific size. This is not Interference, as long as the cutting required is standard practice for that type of item and the store for any customer. Your team must calculate on your own the size or dimensions of the item needed and make the request. This only applies to materials that are commonly cut to size when purchased. Your team may not ask the store to cut the item using a team-created template, sketch or anything else that would require unusual or custom shaping or cutting.

c. Raw materials found in other places (such as a team member’s home) are not included in this rule, as the team is not purchasing the materials in the same way as it would in a commercial business. For example, if a team member happens to have a large piece of wood at home, and your team only needs half of it, it is your team’s responsibility to cut the wood to the size required.

Team Building Activity:  Balloon Bop

Materials: Several inflated balloons.

Challenge: Stand in a circle. Toss a balloon in the air and call someone's name and a body part. That individual must keep the balloon in the air with the named body part until he/she calls another person's name and body part. This helps the team learn to listen to others.

Instant Challenge: Choice of Sheets

Challenge: Create a mystery story and then present a performance in which a sheet is your only prop.

Time: You will have up to 5 minutes to use your IMAGINATION to create your mystery story, as well as to plan and practice your performance, and then up to 2 minutes to present your performance.

The Scene: Everyone loves a good mystery! Create a skit involving a mystery where:

1. There is a mystery that needs to be solved.

2. There is at least one unusual character.

3. There are one or more clues.

4. There is a solution to the mystery.

When you present your skit, your only prop will be a sheet. Try to use the sheet in as many ways of possible.

Materials: You will be given three different sheets from which to choose. However, you may only use one sheet and this sheet may not be damaged. A piece of paper and a pencil also will be available for your team to use as you plan and present your performance

Scoring: You will receive

A. 5 points each (20 points maximum) if your performance includes a mystery that needs to be solved, an unusual character, at least one clue and a solution to the mystery.

B. Up to 30 points for how creatively you use the sheet in your performance.

C. Up to 30 points for the creativity of your performance.

D. Up to 20 points how well your team works together. © 2014 Destination Imagination, Inc.

Date Published: 
Sat, 11/01/2014