Oakhill Students Shine in School's First Trip to the Great Plains Regional Future City Competition
GLADSTONE, MO - Oakhill Day School students made a trip to the campus of Kansas State University on Saturday, January 26, 2019, to compete for the first time in the Great Plains Regional Future City Competition. Oakhill's Team Calama earned a top 5 spot out of 52 teams represented from 29 area schools at the competition and received the Build It Smaller Award from HNTB for Best Physical Model. Team Jakarta earned the Engineering Our Future Award for the Highest Ranked New School and brought home a $250 Technology grant from Westar Energy.
The Oakhill Science and Technology departments spent the first semester of the school year working together on this cross-curricular project that merges all areas of engineering with other essential skills like math, public speaking, and research to get students to brainstorm solutions to real-world problems. Each seventh and eighth-grade student at Oakhill participated in the Future City program; nine teams total, narrowed down to five after a school-wide round of judging was held to decide who would go on to the regional competition.
"As teachers taking on this task for the first time, we had no idea what to expect," said Maggie Newhouse, Middle School Science Teacher," but each of our students did an amazing job." As most teams had mentors to guide them through the process, Oakhill students met with Gladstone City Planners and other members of the community who work in the field of engineering to guide them through the research and virtual planning phase of their projects which took about two months. The students spent the rest of the semester writing scripts, rehearsing their presentations, and building their city models to scale.
"Our students should be proud of all they accomplished. It was a huge deal, bigger than I think they understand," said Sara Verwers, Oakhill Technology Teacher. "Hopefully we can connect with more engineers in the future to help mentor our students through another year of competition."
View photos from the Future City in-school presentations and the Great Plains Regional Future City Competition!