Two CMS schools win first place at Odyssey of the Mind World Finals
Beverly Woods Elementary and Myers Park High schools won first place at the Odyssey of the Mind World Finals held at the University of Maryland May 27-May 30. Odyssey of the Mind is divided into three divisions for elementary, middle and high school groups. Each team must learn to think creatively to solve one of five problems and answer spontaneous questions asked on the spot by Odyssey judges during the competition. Beverly Woods and Myers Park both won first place in their division for the problem Full Circle, where teams create and present a humorous performance where something changes form or appearance at least three times and eventually undergoes a final change where it returns to its original form and appearance.

CMS schools that also placed in the competition were:

Elementary Schools

Matthews – eighth place in Extreme Mousemobiles

Sharon – 17th place in Unhinged Structure

Middle Schools

South Charlotte – fourth place in Le Tour Guide

Community House – sixth place in Le Tour Guide

High School

Myers Park also placed 18th in Le Tour Grand, 27th in Unhinged Structure and 22nd in As Good as Gold...Berg. 

The teams competed against schools from all over the country and world, including China, Germany, Poland, South Korea and Switzerland. Odyssey of the Mind began in 1978 with 28 schools from New Jersey and has grown steadily since then. The purpose is to help students learn to think creatively to solve problems and work with their peers as a team. Students are judged on how they apply their creativity, knowledge, skills and talents at the competitions. Students first examine the five problems' synopses that are released by Odyssey in the fall. The teams choose the problem they want to solve and work together by brainstorming different ways to solve the problem.

In addition to the problem of choice, which takes weeks and months to solve, participants were also given a spontaneous problem in the competition, which requires them to think on their feet. There’s no single right answer to any problem – it’s all open-ended and students are scored based on ingenuity and creativity.

Competitions were held at the local and state level earlier this year. Teams needed to place first or second in their division at the state tournament to qualify for the world finals.