Josh Shortlidge and Kathi Rossi-Roh, co-Citywide Coordinators for Melrose DI in Massachusetts are planning what they call an Instant Challenge Mash-Up. Melrose DI has thirteen teams: 8 elementary, 1 middle school, and 4 high school teams. All team members and coaches are invited to participate in the event, which will give participants a chance to test their instant challenge skills with their own teammates as well as with "mash-up" teams. It is not necessary for entire teams to attend in order for kids to participate.

Josh expects the mash-up to last for two hours which should give each participant the chance to do at least two challenges; one with their own team members, and one or more with a mash-up team of diverse ages.

There will be three stages set up around the edges of a large room with the audience in the middle of the room. All three stages will be occupied by teams that are working on the same Challenge. The teams will be given the Challenge at the same time, and will present their solutions back-to-back, so the kids can see how different solutions to the same IC can be.

Each coach is asked to bring one or two ICs and put them on the "Challenge Table". Each Challenge should be in a closed bag or envelope, with a tag saying if it is "hands-on" or "theatrical". If a Challenge requires materials then the bag must contain three sets of materials bundled for each of the teams on the three stages.

What a great idea, and a great opportunity for the teams to practice! If you have a favorite way to help your teams or students practice their problem solving skills, feel free to share it via the comment button.

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