• Feb. 23, 2024

    Odyssey of the Mind teams think on their feet at Spontaneous Fun Day competition

    Mushroom FrogsTwo Boyce Middle School teams earned first and second place at the Western Pennsylvania Odyssey of the Mind Spontaneous Fun Day on Saturday, Feb 17, 2024, at Linton Middle School in Penn Hills.

    The USC Mushroom Frogs – a team of fifth graders – earned first place in Division 1 (grades 2-5). Coached by Katherine Zesch and Amber Rowlands, team members include Lila Dressel, Ava Fingal, Kyri Link, Emma Marquez, Frannie Rapport and Liz Zesch.

    The sixth-grade team – USC RatSplat – earned second place in Division 2 (grades 6-8). Team members include Lydia Calkins, Caroline Fingal, Drew Holzer, Keira Mycoff and Jacob Reinford. The team is coached by Josh Mycoff and John Reinford.

    Nine of Upper St. Clair’s 23 Odyssey of the Mind teams attended the event.

    Spontaneous Fun Day is an Odyssey of the Mind competition where teams from the Western Pennsylvania region gather to test their problem-solving skills before heading to the Regional Tournament in March. At Fun Day, teams are given several problems to solve spontaneously or "on the spot” with no prior knowledge of the problem before entering the room.
    Spontaneous problems are either verbal, verbal hands-on, or hands-on in nature. Verbal problems require a spoken response. Verbal hands-on problems involve a physical solution with a spoken response. Hands-on problems are purely constructive requiring the team to build or create their problem solution. Scores are given for creativity, teamwork and other measurable parameters.

    Odyssey of the Mind is an international STEAM program that fosters creative problem-solving skills, teamwork and ownership in students from grades K through 12. For more information about Odyssey of the Mind in Upper St. Clair, visit www.uscootm.com or email uscootm@gmail.com.