2002 Craftsman/NSTA Young Inventors Awards Program Honors 36 Creative Students

2nd Through 8th Graders Earn $250, $500 and $5,000 Bonds; 12 Have Chance to Win More

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

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

  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

  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

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

  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

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

  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

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

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

  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

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 younginventors@nsta.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

Website: http://www.sears.com/

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