Pupils Shine at UAE Regionals of Tournament of Minds 2024, Celebrating Innovation and Collaboration

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This past weekend, Brighton College Dubai hosted the UAE regionals of The Tournament of Minds (TOM), an esteemed Australian educational competition to enhance pupils’ critical and creative thinking skills.

Five schools from Dubai and Abu Dhabi participated in the tournament’s latest edition, with over 90 pupils forming 13 teams, fostering a competitive spirit and collaborative environment. Pupils tackled a variety of spontaneous and long-term challenges in global and topical contexts.

The participating schools included: American Academy for Girls, Brighton College Abu Dhabi, Brighton College Dubai, Dubai British School Jumeirah Park and Private International English School Abu Dhabi. Each school showcased their dedication to cultivating their pupils’ creative and critical thinking capabilities.

After six weeks of intensive preparation and presentations before a judging panel, the winners were announced. In the Social Sciences Primary category, Brighton College Dubai’s Brighton Clash took first place, and Dubai British School Jumeirah Park’s Primary GenJP earned honours. In the STEM Primary category, Private International English School’s Primary Team secured first place, while Brighton College Dubai’s Brighton Saviours received honours. In the STEM Senior category, Dubai British School Jumeirah Park’s JPGeniuses claimed first place, with honours going to Brighton College Dubai’s STEMinists.

Sarah Brannon, UAE Director of Tournament of Minds and Head of Prep at Brighton College Dubai commented on the event’s success: “Brighton College is proud to have hosted The Tournament of Minds for another year! It’s events like these that provide an incredible opportunity for pupils to engage in out-of-the-classroom innovative thinking and collaborative problem-solving. It was inspiring to see young minds tackle complex challenges with such enthusiasm and skill – their dedication has been truly remarkable. A big congratulations to all the participants for their hard work and the winners for their exceptional achievements.”

“Participating in the Tournament of Minds was an incredible experience. It pushed us to think creatively and work together as a team to solve challenging problems. In our STEM project we learned so much about the mathematics and science behind how to make an object fly and then had to apply our knowledge in practical ways for the task. It was challenging but, we had a lot of fun along the way!” said Bhadhra Viveka, pupil from Private International English School Abu Dhabi.

During the competition, teams worked independently for six weeks to develop creative solutions to problems within predetermined parameters and criteria. In the STEM challenge, teams were presented with a scenario where an island lost all its birds, significantly impacting their tourist economy. Pupils had to design an exotic bird to “fly” freely and unaided without support or guide wires, explaining the mathematics and science behind their design, whilst in the Social Sciences challenge, teams addressed a time convergence scenario, linking events from different eras and exploring their impact on the modern world.

The Tournament of Minds is acclaimed for its dynamic educational approach, fostering experimentation and problem-solving among talented pupils in primary and secondary education. Pupils are organised into teams and participate in disciplines such as STEM, The Arts, Language Literature, and Social Sciences. Teams are evaluated on creativity, scientific understanding, technology use, application of STEM principles, design and construction, presentation skills, and overall performance, ensuring a comprehensive assessment. Aligning with international curricula, TOM encourages critical and creative thinking, equipping participants with essential skills for the evolving world.

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