By Carolyn Marnon – Gage Waterkamp of Wayne took 2nd place among Franklin Middle School students in the Young Inventors Showcase last month. Young Inventors is a contest that was open to students at six middle schools in the Livonia, Clarenceville and Wayne-Westland school districts that are focused on industrial art classes. The students come up with an invention or innovation that would help others. The other students from Wayne-Westland who participated were from Westland and Inkster. Gage was the only Wayne student.
Franklin Middle School and Stevenson Middle School were the district’s participating schools.
“All of my classes participated in this contest. The students were to design a poster about the invention/innovation, including pictures and how the product works. Along with that they also had to turn in a one-page essay about their invention/innovation. After all submissions were turned in, the staff helped narrow it down to five inventions/innovations that would be entered in the finals against the other schools. Those students then had to make a tri-fold of their invention/innovation along with the essay,”said Kim Mandrelle, Technology Interventionist at Stevenson Middle School.
All entries are then delivered to the event’s sponsor, Alpha USA-an engineering and product development-based manufacturer in Livonia. Alpha USA design engineers picked the top two inventions from each of the six schools participating. From those top 12, the engineers picked an overall 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winners.
Magnetic Spray Paint was Gage’s invention. It would be made of a spray paint compound along with ground neodymium magnets and would be used on walls or boards or to help construction workers with their small parts.
The overall 1st place winner was Steven Smith from Franklin Middle School. His invention was named the Steven Toothbrush, a travel toothbrush that has the handle pre-filled with toothpaste. A squeeze of the handle will allow the toothpaste to fill the bristles from the bottom and is good for up to 5 uses before disposal. The overall 2nd place winner was Jillian Downey from Stevenson Middle School. She invented the Needle Concealer. The idea is to conceal a needle from children. A silicone hollowed-out animal is the concealer that slides over the needle so kids only see the animal, not the needle. It was to help those who had a fear of shots.