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Young inventors: Students test problem solving skills in creative workshops

  • Workshop leader Mitchell Williams of Derry shows students the dragon costume he made out of discarded materials during DIve In!, a New Hampshire Destination Imagination event, at Southern New Hampshire University in Hooksett on Saturday, Jan. 6, 2018. (ELIZABETH FRANTZ / Monitor staff) Elizabeth Frantz—Monitor staff

  • Seven-year-old Brody Mosher (right) receives a compliment from a teammate as part of the “All Together Now” workshop during DIve In!, a New Hampshire Destination Imagination event, at Southern New Hampshire University in Hooksett on Saturday, Jan. 6, 2018. (ELIZABETH FRANTZ / Monitor staff) Elizabeth Frantz—Monitor staff

  • Concord Christian Academy third-graders Hannah Anderson (left) and Anna Pope upcycle a burlap sack into a costume during DIve In!, a New Hampshire Destination Imagination event, at Southern New Hampshire University in Hooksett on Saturday, Jan. 6, 2018. (ELIZABETH FRANTZ / Monitor staff) Elizabeth Frantz—Monitor staff

  • Concord Christian Academy students including, Jack Laboe (left to right), Paysen Lamoureux, Kenzie Verril and Maddie Eno, work together to build a tower that fulfills a number of prerequisites during DIve In!, a New Hampshire Destination Imagination event, at Southern New Hampshire University in Hooksett on Saturday, Jan. 6, 2018. (ELIZABETH FRANTZ / Monitor staff) Elizabeth Frantz—Monitor staff

  • Concord Christian Academy student Hayden Lamoureux, 15, focuses on keeping accurate time in his head despite the white noise in the room as part of an instant challenge during DIve In!, a New Hampshire Destination Imagination event, at Southern New Hampshire University in Hooksett on Saturday, Jan. 6, 2018. (ELIZABETH FRANTZ / Monitor staff) Elizabeth Frantz—Monitor staff



Monitor staff
Saturday, January 06, 2018

As third-grader Hannah Anderson and her Concord Christian Academy teammates rummaged through piles of “trash,” ideas for their upcoming play flowed – costumes could be made from scraps of burlap and other fabrics; a pizza box could become a bathroom sign, and cardboard cylinders could be converted into coffee cups.

Anderson’s all-girl team was participating in one of 10 workshops at DIve In!, a New Hampshire Destination Imagination event that took place at Southern New Hampshire University in Hooksett on Saturday.

In the workshop, “Dumpster DIve,” the teams’ task was to recycle trash items to create costumes and sets for a play.

“It’s a lot of fun to do,” Anderson said before taking a pair of scissors to a burlap sack with teammate Anna Pope. “I learn how to use different materials in different ways.”

Destination Imagination is a non profit organization that teaches STEM principles to students through creative and collaborative problem solving challenges.

In addition to creativity, the workshops Saturday offered lessons in critical thinking, collaboration and communication. An instant challenge added a time limit that pushed teams to think quickly as they worked together to build a tower out of plastic straws, aluminum foil and other items.

Concord Christian Academy’s DI coordinator Susanne Haddock has been involved in the program in one way or another for nine years and says it teaches the students incredible skills.

“It teaches them time management, project management, teamwork,” she said. “It’s learning to work in a group with a lot of different people.”

Haddock said she didn’t fully develop those skills until she entered the workforce, and now sees children learning to work together toward a shared goal.

The open-ended challenges Saturday prepares students for New Hampshire Destination Imagination spring tournaments. This school year, more than 1,800 students from more than 100 schools across the state will participate in the program.