Science Olympiad (6,7,8)

Science Olympiad 2017-2018
Science Olympiad is a club open to 6th ,7th, and 8th grade students who want to broaden their experiences in the sciences, want the challenge of working beyond the middle school curriculum and want to match their skills against students from other schools in competition. 

Coaches and contact information:
Mike Smith - msmith@tvsd.org
Donna Kertis - dkertis@tvsd.org

Meeting Times and competition dates:
We will have an informational meeting for 7th and 8th graders interested in Science Olympiad during advisory and for 6th graders during lunch before the end of September. Students should listen to announcements for the dates. Students who miss the meeting should see Mr. Smith in room 322.

Once we begin, the official weekly meetings will be Thursday mornings:
7th and 8th graders – Thursday mornings from 7:00 to 8:00am in room 322
  6th graders  -  Thursday mornings from 7:30 to 8:30am in room 322
  Thursday October 5: first meeting
  Saturday January 6 (snow date Jan 7): Invitational competition in West Chester
  Thursday March 15 (snow date March 16): Regional competition at Kutztown University 

Limits on the competing team:
It is important that all students understand from the start that only 15 students can compete on the Science Olympiad team. The other students can participate as we prepare and can go to the competition and see many of the events, but each school must decide on a competing team of only 15 students.
We are looking for the following for students to be one of the 15 competing members:
  1) Responsibility to work independently when the coaches are working with other students
  2) Responsibility to work on their event independently at times other than Thursday mornings
  3) Willingness to prepare for 3 or 4 of the 23 events
  4) Willingness to prepare for an event even if it is not their “favorite” because that  is  what is best for the team
  5) Experience from participating in Science Olympiad last year

It is less likely that 6th graders will be on the competing team because we have a lot of returning 7th and 8th graders. However, 6th graders who participate are essential to a strong team next year when they will be the returning members with experience.

Additional Science Olympiad Information:
There are 23 different events in the middle school competition (see www.soinc.org division B for a list of events). Some of the events require building things. Some events require researching and memorizing information. Some events require designing and or doing lab experiments. Students will get the descriptions, directions, and rules for each event at the first meeting of Science Olympiad.

Each student will sign up and prepare for 3 of the 23 events. Students will be expected to work on their events in small groups or independently and make progress while the coaches are working with other students. Students will be expected to show initiative in searching for information and/or collecting materials for their events. Students can also show initiative in seeking out other mentors that have expertise on the topics in their events. Some possibilities for other mentors include other teachers, relatives, neighbors, or older students. Students who have participated in Science Olympiad in previous years are expected to mentor new students who are working on the same topics.

For additional information about Science Olympiad you can go to the Science Olympiad web page:  www.soinc.org .
This web page has many resources including additional information sorted by event, FAQ and rule changes, information about past and present tournaments, access to communicate with other students in other schools, and a Science Olympiad store where kits or instructional resources may be purchased. 

Students have also found valuable information by doing internet searches outside of the Science Olympiad web pages. In particular, YouTube has been very helpful for students working on events where they are building things.