Hands-free door openers, scooter accoutrements, pet-care devices and ergonomic implements are just some of the tools created by 36 second through eighth graders, who are being honored by the 2002 Craftsman/NSTA Young Inventors Awards Program -- with prizes of $250, $500 or $5,000 U.S. savings bonds. Their award-winning ideas were selected from entries submitted by more than 4,300 children across the country -- all of whom accepted the challenge to invent a new tool or re-think an existing one.
"I'm always amazed at the clever ideas percolating in the minds of kids," said Bob Vila, popular home-improvement expert and spokesperson for the Craftsman/NSTA Young Inventors Awards Program. "They love to look at a problem and create a solution -- and the Craftsman/NSTA Young Inventors Awards Program gives them that opportunity. That's one reason a thousand more youngsters entered this year than last year!"
"Time and again, teachers tell us that the Craftsman/NSTA Young Inventors Awards Program helps kids get excited about science," said Dr. Gerry Wheeler, executive director of the National Science Teachers Association (NSTA). Sponsored by Sears Craftsman tools and the NSTA, the program, which is in its sixth year in classrooms across America, is designed to teach students the scientific principles of how tools operate; introduce them to working with hand tools; encourage them to think creatively about the world around them; and enable them to develop practical solutions to everyday problems.
Children's entries are judged in two grade categories -- second through fifth and sixth through eighth. Each of the two grade categories includes awards for six national finalists, six second-place regional winners and six third-place regional winners. In total:
-- 12 national finalists each will receive a $5,000 U.S. savings bond, as well as a trip for themselves, their parents and their teachers to the national awards ceremony in Chicago in the fall, at which time two top winners of an additional $5,000 bond will be named; -- 12 second-place regional winners each will receive a $500 U.S. savings bond; and -- 12 third-place regional winners each will receive a $250 U.S. savings bond.
The 12 national finalists, 12 second-place regional winners and 12 third- place regional winners are as follows:
National finalists - second-through-fifth-grade category ($5,000 bond): Alison Sapack, fourth grade Kayleigh Inkley, fifth grade Longmeadow Elementary School, Assumption School, Wood Middlebury, Conn. Ridge, N.J. "No Turn Door Knob Opener" - a lever "Parcel Pal" - a padded, "C"- attached to a doorknob opens the door shaped hangar holds full with the push of an arm. plastic shopping bags, making it easier and less painful to carry them. Jake Klimek, fifth grade Jenna Ross, fourth grade Central School, Huntsville, Ala. Schwarzkoff School, Sterling "G.R.A.S.P.P. Device" - helps to "grasp Heights, Mich. remove and safely place (a) pan" being "The Handi-Rake" - an "S"- taken from an oven. curved rake lifts and moves on wheels, helping those with "trouble using one of their arms." Tessa Marek, fourth grade Christian Conley, third grade Thomas Arnold Elementary School, Salado, Buena Vista Elementary School, Texas Palmdale, Calif. "The Easy Crutches" - a lever and pedal "Scooter Stand" - shelf attached to a crutch provide a resting brackets screwed into a wooden place for an injured foot or leg. circle enable a scooter to stand on its own. National finalists - sixth-through-eighth-grade category ($5,000 bond): Lisa Tripodi, seventh grade Michael Kitlas, sixth grade Torrington Middle School, Torrington, Bernardsville Middle School, Conn. Bernardsville, N.J. "Step on Foot Opener" - a ball placed "Razor TT" - non-rusting wire over a doorknob and attached to a rod and non-slip tape provide enables a foot to open a door. traction for a scooter on snow and ice. Trey Wiler, sixth grade Justin Riebeling, sixth grade Windermere Prep School, Windermere, Fla. Millstadt Consolidated School, "Spyder Legs" - fold-down attachments to Millstadt, Ill. a ladder provide stability, especially "Speed Grain Cart" - wooden on uneven surfaces. walls and a movable chute added to a "kid's wagon," help load, carry and dispense grain. Ashton Russell, sixth grade Jacob Hoj, seventh grade Marsalis Elementary School, Dallas, Texas Wasatch Junior High School, "Dirt Moist Fork" - water flowing down Salt Lake City, Utah a tube on a pitchfork helps dampen and "Column Repair Lever Tool" - loosen soil for gardening. used for "minor repairs on twisted steel rack (warehouse) columns ... damaged by forklifts."
Second-place regional winners - second-through-fifth-grade category ($500 bond):
Jordan Butler, third grade Jennifer Chiang, third grade Booth Free School, Roxbury, Conn. Liberty Corner School, Liberty "The Hands Free Refrigerator Door Opener" Corner, N.J. - a step-on device attached to a "Hookdriver" - a tool that refrigerator opens the door. twists like a screwdriver and has a clipper at the end helps to install decorative hooks. William Corey Shamblen, fifth grade Thomas Kirschenbauer, fourth Summit Hill Elementary School, Alpharetta, grade Ga. William Harper School, "The Quad Pet Leash" - tubing and string Cleveland, Ohio help a disabled person unlatch his dog's "Magna Broom" - a magnetic leash. strip added to a push broom helps pick up metal screws and nails, as well as dirt and dust. Christina Williams, fifth grade Chelsea Ricketts, third grade St. Vincent's Episcopal School, Bedford, Greenbrook School, Danville, Texas Calif. "Mister Umbrella" - an umbrella with a "Gutter Sweep" - a broom water pump and misters provides shade and head attached to a curved tube a cooling spray. and an eight-foot extension pole helps to clean the gutters.
Second-place regional winners - sixth-through-eighth-grade category ($500 bond):
Taylor Gallerani, seventh grade Tyler Ableson, sixth grade Frontier Regional School, S. Deerfield, Bernardsville Middle School, Mass. Bernardsville, N.J. "The Spacious Shopper" - hinged shelves "The Screw Sleeve" - a metal attached to a grocery cart provide room tube with magnets and rubber for additional items. at the bottom holds a screw securely while it's being driven. Carrie Layton, seventh grade Eugene Thomas Erlikh, sixth Wilson Middle School, Tampa, Fla. grade "Easy Fill Garbage Bag System" - holds Greenview Upper Elementary open a yard-clippings bag and has an School, S. Euclid, Ohio add-on piece for easy raking. "The Pedal Pump" - a box with a bicycle seat and pedals out-side, and a chain and pump inside, inflates basketballs and more. Kristen Mortimer, sixth grade Raina Kobayashi, sixth grade Mustang North Middle School, Mustang, Sunrise Elementary School, Okla. Redmond, Wash. "Extend-O Feed" - a can pivoting on "The Back Attach" - "C" clamps brackets attached to a long pole refills affix a customized board to bird feeders and hanging plants. the base of a chair or a stadium bench, creating a back rest.
Third-place regional winners - second-through-fifth-grade category ($250 bond):
Jason Graaf, fourth grade Ben Knight, fifth grade Davenport Ridge School, Stamford, Conn. Rippling Woods Elementary "The No-Mess Paint Mixer"- a handle School, Glen Burnie, Md. atop the lid, and drive shaft and paddle "Pole"-ter-"twist" - a wheel below, stir a can of paint neatly. and axle inside a PVC pipe attached to a flagpole keep a flag's ropes from twisting. Joseph Austin Tucker, fourth grade Ryan Plunkett, fourth grade Sweetwater Episcopal Academy, Longwood, St. Michael School, Wheaton, Fla. Ill. "Swing Myself Hammock" - a hammock "Adjustable Children's Table & attached to a frame swings with the Chairs"- different heights are help of a pulley system. created when a notched top is laid on scissors-like legs. Trent Wagnon, fourth grade Sara Bitarafan, fifth grade Thomas Arnold Elementary School, La Jolla Country Day School, La Salado, Texas Jolla, Calif. "Push Bar Soap" - a push-up container "The Fruit Picker" - two, long with a carved-to-fit bar of soap inside wooden spoons crisscrossed and provides convenient clean-ups. hinged at the center pick hard-to-reach fruit from trees.
Third-place regional winners - sixth-through-eighth-grade category ($250 bond):
Nicole Yoder, third grade Frank Giglio, sixth grade Belleville Mennonite School, St. Theresa School, Ashburn, Belleville, Pa. Va. "Paint Stick Holder" - helps dairy "The Bike Hoist" - mounting farmers mark milk cows that are brackets and a pulley affixed going dry or need their feet trimmed. to a garage wall help to lift up and store a bicycle. Nicholas Skarda, eighth grade James Shearer, eighth grade Chamblee Middle School, Atlanta, Ga. Central Middle School, "Smart Post" - a four-legged stand Cleveland, Ohio holds a fence post or similar object "The Clamper" - designed for while the cement around it dries. older people and children, this clamp opens with a screw and closes with the push of a button. David Zapata, sixth grade Robert Ptaszynski, sixth grade Broussard Middle School, Broussard, La. Sunrise Elementary School, "Two-Sided Window Washer" - uses magnets, Redmond, Wash. sponges and plastic tubing to wash both "Doggie Salon" - a curved sides of a car's windows. plastic shelter with a sprinkler device inside the top creates a dog-washing area.
For more information on the Craftsman/NSTA Young Inventors Awards Program, write to Craftsman/NSTA Young Inventors Awards, c/o National Science Teachers Association, 1840 Wilson Blvd., Arlington, VA 22201-3000; call toll-free 1-888-494-4994; or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. Information also is available at NSTA's Web site, http://www.nsta.org/program/craftsman.
Founded in 1944, the National Science Teachers Association is the world's largest organization dedicated to promoting excellence and innovation in science teaching and learning for all. The association's current membership of more than 53,000 includes science teachers and supervisors, administrators, scientists, business and industry representatives, and others involved in science education.
Craftsman is the most popular tool brand in America -- and the U.S. brand that consumers rank No. 1 for quality, of any kind of product, ahead of Waterford crystal and Rolls-Royce motor cars (per a 2001 EquiTrend(SM) study by Harris Interactive). Craftsman opens more garage doors, mows more lawns, fills more tool boxes, and organizes, stores and protects more tools than any other brand in America.
Sears, Roebuck and Co. is a broadline retailer with significant service and credit businesses. In 2001, the company's annual revenue was more than $41 billion. The company offers its wide range of apparel, home and automotive products and services to families in the U.S. through Sears stores nationwide, including approximately 870 full-line stores. Sears also offers a wide variety of merchandise and services through its Web site, http://www.sears.com/ .
SOURCE: Sears, Roebuck & Co.
Contact: Carol Simantz for Sears, Roebuck & Co., +1-847-692-6311, or Ann
Woolman of Sears, Roebuck & Co., +1-847-286-7079