St. James triumphs over “Swine Flu,” takes first at DI

St. James Lutheran School is pleased to announce that St. James Destination Imagination (DI) team placed first in the regional competition this year, David Kaiser, principal of St. James Lutheran School, announced.

The team is composed of students from third through eighth grades.

The purpose of Destination Imagination is to inspire and equip students to become the next generation of innovators and leaders. Annually, DI offers seven new standards-based challenges in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math), improvisation, visual arts, service learning, and early learning, Kaiser explained.

Each challenge is open-ended and enables student teams to learn and experience the creative process from imagination to innovation. Academic tournaments take place around the world where teams have the opportunity to present their solutions to trained appraisers.

Students have fun and gain confidence in their ability to solve any challenge. In working to solve these challenges, teams learn 21st century skills (creativity, critical thinking, collaboration, communication, citizenship and courage) to build on their unique strengths.

Out of the seven challenges offered this year, the St. James DI team chose to explore the STEM challenge for this year. The year’s theme was Medical Mystery. The team had eight minutes to create a skit about an illness that affects the human body.

The students choose the swine flu. They had to integrate medical research into their skit. At least one human character had to have one symptom. The students also had to make a Sympt-O-Matic which showed one symptom of the swine flu. The team chose to use chemistry to make vomit. The skit also had to include “Double Vision,” staging and blocking. That means props or people move around during the skit, or are used for other purposes.

“We often to see that the newspapers show the highlights of school students who are athletically gifted. I am proud of St. James and our ‘cerebral athletes’ as they were scored for their critical-thinking, team work, and communication. We thank Coach Walker and the other parents who have helped work with the students as they have prepared for the competition. This is another way to help students foster their creativity and higher-level thinking as they complete these challenges. St. James is proud of the hard work and effort that our DI team demonstrated this past weekend,” Kaiser said.