InvenTeams – Blog #1

At the beginning of August this year, 26 freshman and 28 sophomores in the Kealakehe Stem Academy started out on a quest to find a topic for their InvenTeams submission. Mr. Brown and Mr. Weir (our teachers) started off the process by asking every student to come up with a individual invention that solved a problem they cared about. Everyone presented their idea, and our teachers selected several ideas that were both feasible and original. Out of nearly 60 inventions we narrowed our scope down to three per class. From the freshman class, the three ideas were a portable and affordable autoclave, a sensor that detects foodborne diseases like e-coli in restaurants, and a buzzer that detected breaks in fences on large ranches. We divided into groups and performed extensive background research on different aspects of each invention such as budgets, materials, and similar patents. After weeks of preparation we pitched Shark Tank style presentations until we were able to decide on a final proposal for each class. From the freshman class it was the portable autoclave that was chosen, and from the sophomore class, a drinking and driving prevention steering wheel was chosen. Each class then had to finalize their proposals as if they were going to submit it for the Lemelson-MIT project. Out of the two proposals, the one that made it through was the DDSC (Drunk Driving Steering Companion). The following Sunday and Monday we took the proposal and finalized it. In the picture below, after 8 long hours of work, we submitted the proposal and went to Denny’s for a 1 am breakfast. We had finally finished work on our invention proposal… A few weeks later we were notified that we had been selected to receive a grant to fund the development of our invention. We had done it!


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