Thirteen School District 71 teams participated in the Destination Imagination (DI) provincial tournament on April 7.
The annual competition took place at Johnston Heights Secondary School, in Surrey.
SD71 students showed some impressive performances and took home three provincial championship titles and seven other top-three finishes.
Valley teams returned to dominate the Improvisation Challenge, taking the top three places at the secondary and middle school level. At the Secondary School Level, G.P. Vanier Secondary School successfully secured the provincial championship, followed by Mark R. Isfeld Secondary in second place.
In the Fine Arts Challenge, teams were faced with the challenge of writing and performing a musical. École Puntledge Park Elementary successfully secured second place in the elementary level division, while Highland Secondary finished third at the secondary level.
In the Scientific Challenge, Highland finished second at the middle level, while Isfeld and Puntledge students, in a combined team, took the provincial championship.
Highland took the provincial championship in the final challenge in engineering, edging out Vanier, which finished second. Navigate NIDES and Lake Trail Middle School rounded out the district teams and showed outstanding growth, development, and success.
Ninety-five teams from British Columbia and the Yukon displayed their skills at the competition, in critical and creative thinking, innovation, collaboration, communication, and problem-solving.
Lake Trail principal and DI British Columbia board president Gerald Fussell said that, although the 10 SD71 teams placing in the top three at the provincial tournament qualify to attend the global finals in Knoxville, Tennessee in May, not all from SD71 will choose to go.
“Each year, hundreds of teams begin the DI journey, but many don’t have the strength and resilience to make it as far as the provincial tournament,” he said. “Being successful takes a lot of work, commitment, and skill.
“We are very fortunate to be in a district that supports this program as it is very expensive to get to and participate in the different tournaments,” Fussell continued. “Our students do well and learn many skills to help them become successful in the dynamic world they are entering.
According to Fussell, four teams in the Comox Valley will try to raise enough funds to participate in the Global Finals.
“I hope they are successful because I know, from past experiences, that those who go will represent our community well,” he said.
DI is an educational experience based on project-based STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math) challenges that apply the creative process to develop the core competencies. There are seven different challenge types – Technical, Scientific, Engineering, Fine Arts, Improvisational, Service Learning, and Early Learning – each created to provide the student teams the opportunity to stretch their creativity, learn to collaborate, practice critical thinking skills, and develop communication skills.