Marin Jorgenson (right) works on another stabilizing strut for her group’s miniature wind turbine during Elementary Skills Day at Ballenas Secondary on Thursday, March 8. — Adam Kveton Photo

VIDEO: Students take on elementary skills challenge in Parksville

Grade 5-7 students build spaghetti bridges, mini wind turbines, more

About 225 Grade 5-7 students were busy building miniature wind turbines, bridges out of spaghetti, coding remote control balls and more at Ballenas Secondary School Thursday, March 8.

The students were taking part in Elementary Skills Day — where students apply concepts and plans they’ve made at school to one-day challenges like building the lightest but strongest bridge structure out of spaghetti, or creating the most efficient wind turbine out of pvc and cardboard that generates the most electricity.

“It’s a culmination of all these students who have been working on projects at their schools,” said Luc Ouellet, career co-ordinator with School District 69 (Qualicum). “They have to work creatively with teams where they put together a package to compete with other schools to demonstrate tactile, hands-on learning skills and combining that with their academic portion of school.”

One group from Nanoose Bay Elementary, made up of Brooke Bleaney, Grace Bouman and Makenna Coply, explained that their design for a wind turbine evolved from their original concept based on mimicking real-world wind turbines, which improved the performance.

Students from Nanoose Bay, Springwood, Oceanside, Arrowview, Errington and Qualicum Beach elementary schools took part.

The winners in the gravity car, spaghetti bridge and wind turbine competitions will have the opportunity to compete at the Skills Canada Provincial competition in April, said Ouellet.

The winners were:

Spaghetti Bridge:

1st Place: Qualicum Beach Elementary – Amelia Jewer, Michaela David

2nd Place: Nanoose Bay Elementary – Grace Smith, Taylor Parcher, Annie Jorgenson

3rd Place: Nanoose Bay Elementary – Mmo Ramohoeloo, Landon Hohnstein

Wind Turbines:

1st Place: Nanoose Bay Elementary – Grace Bouman, Makenna Copley, Brooke Bleaney

2nd Place: Arrowview Elementary – Emma Sjoberg, Keevah Kupiak, Jenna

3rd place: Nanoose Bay Elementary – Jack Jonsonious, Nolan Brockway

Gravity Cars:

1st Place: Arrowview Elementary – Jacob & Harry

2nd Place: Springwood Elementary – Tatum Howell, Abby Denny, Tommy Lay

3rd Place: Oceanside Elementary – Carter Brett, Kylas Button


1st Place: Nanoose Bay Elementary – Danioca Ballendine, Mackenzie Uitdenbosch

2nd Place: Nanoose Bay Elementary – Declan Erler, Thunya Dudley

3rd Place: Nanoose Bay Elementary – Austin Squire, Dallan Ostaffy

Keva Planks:

1st Place: Errington Elementary – “The Wild Cats” Rowan, Kiera, Adang

2nd Place: Nanoose Bay Elementary – “The Ducks” Sheldon, Caleb

3rd Place: Erington Elementary – “Tiny Team” Peyton, Avery, Claire

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