“What technology can you make to create a lucid dream, and what happens if you keep dreaming it?” Such was one of the scenarios posed to Year 5 and 6 students who were among 620 bright young boys and girls from Years 5-10 attending the sixth Northern NSW da Vinci Decathlon at The Armidale School this week.
At the three day event – the largest Northern NSW da Vinci Decathlon yet – teams of eight students tackled challenges across 10 disciplines: Mathematics; English; Science; Code Breaking; Engineering Challenge; Ideation; Creative Producers; Art and Poetry; Cartography; General Knowledge. The overarching theme ‘Memories’ formed a core of several of the challenges.
Schools from Wee Waa, Armidale, Inverell, Tamworth, Scone, Bellingen, Coffs Harbour, Narrabri, Moree, Dubbo and Glen Innes were joined by students from Aurora College, a virtual selective high school which teaches students from across the state.
TAS Year 10 student Jack Nivison has attended all six northern da Vinci Decathlons and said it continues to stimulate.
“Even though it follows the same format it changes a bit each year because there’s a different theme, so there’s no chance of doing the same thing twice,” he said.
“I like that it makes you think outside the box. You may think you know the answer to something, but have to be creative in how you find your solutions in the given time – and that’s part of the excitement and fun.”
The honours were shared around the region. Results were: Year 5 – 1 Armidale City Public, 2 Carinya Christian School, 3 Ben Venue PS (B); Year 6 – 1 Armidale City Public, 2 Macquarie Anglican Grammar School (A), Dubbo, 3 Ben Venue PS (A); Year 7 – 1 Armidale High School, 2 O’Connor Catholic College, 3 Bellingen High School; Year 8 – 1 PLC Armidale, 2 Calrossy Anglican School, 3 Duval High School; Year 9 – 1 Carinya Christian School (B), 2 Bishop Druitt College, 3 Calrossy Anglican School; Year 10 – 1 Glen Innes High School, 2 PLC Armidale, 3 Carinya Christian School.
“Various Decathlon events are held across Australia and even overseas, but the Northern NSW event at TAS is perhaps the best regional one, for the way it brings together students from across its region and the enthusiasm the students have for the competition. TAS has also been on board from the start with our regional events and we are grateful to the school and Catherine Boydell for hosting it for the region,” said coordinator Dylan Sherman from Knox Grammar School which devised the event.