There were three levels of difficulty, for different age groups. This is called a Tournament rather than a competition, because it is hoped that everyone would achieve a measure of success. Marks are given for teamwork and design, as well as for the finished product. They all worked hard, and came up with a large number of different designs.
All participants received a Certificate, which can help with their C.V.s in future, and the winning members each received a token prize to remember the event.
This Tournament was introduced to Chesham many years ago by the late Rev Derek Upcot, and has now spread throughout Britain. The Derek Upcot Memorial Cup was presented to The John Colet School.
The highlight of the event was watching all the devices being tested, and a speech by our Chief Judge, Ray Payne. He is a professor of Engineering, and a well-known local resident, and was able to explain how solving problems like this apply in the real world, illustrated by features of the various devices produced.
Pictured from left, Rotary District Governor Andy Calvert, Mayor of Chesham Majid Ditta, Ms Chapman, Mayor of Amersham Mark Roberts, and the Deputy Mayor of Chesham Wilford Augustus.
Below is an article from Chiltern Hills Newsletter describing the event:
On Friday 24 February Chiltern Hills, in association with The Rotary Club of Chesham, hosted a technology tournament. Schools from across the region sent teams of 4 to compete across 3 different age categories; Foundation (ages 11-14), Intermediate (15-16) and Advance (17-19).
The challenge this year involved students needing to remove a tennis ball from within a perspex box and then place it onto a set place from around 1.5m away. The task was based around the real life scenario of moving radioactive material from decommissioned nuclear submarines here in the United Kingdom. The task had been set by chief judge and senior engineering lecturer from the University of Auckland, Ray Payne.
Once the formal introductions were out of the way, all students began to assess the task and the materials with which they had been provided. Planning came easier to some groups then others but all were clearly working as a team to find a solution. Some started building before finalising their planning stages and this only became an issue towards the end of the task when they started to run out of materials. Others produced amazing plans but then lacked the dexterity to make their plans a reality. That all being said, all teams managed to produce something by the end of the day that they were then able to test them in front of the judges.
Throughout the day we had dignitaries from across the local community come and visit and see the young people of the region working well and interacting with each other.
Over the course of the day the group of judges were circulating and assessing the students across a range of different areas, including teamwork, planning, manufacturing and how well their final products achieved the objectives of the task.
We entered a team into all three categories. They were;
Foundation: Ollie Orchard, Charlie Elton-Jones, Tilly Guerin, Antonia Lee
Intermediate: Sara Thompson Garcia-Miguel, Benjamin Watt, Summer-Rose Greed, Oscar Testa
Advanced: Ayman Ahmed, Haleem Nazakat, Mikhail Tariq
All three teams did themselves, us and the school proud, with both the intermediate and advance groups winning their categories.
I would like to thank all the staff that came and supported the students across the day, as well as the catering and site team for helping the day to run smoothly. Finally I would like to thank The Rotary Club of Chesham and, in particular, David Unwin and Jeremy Wyman. Without the time and effort these people put in, events like Friday just would not be possible.
Mr P Toovey
Director of Science
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