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Chatfield High School "Rube Goldberg" take Home First Place

April 24, 2018 07:07 PM

(ABC 6 News) -- The Chatfield High school "Rube Goldberg" team took home first place in the national competition in Chicago over the weekend.

"Rube Goldberg was an inventor and a cartoonist. And he would draw very complicated machines that did a simple everyday task, like brush your teeth, wipe your face with a napkin,” said Nora Gathje, the team’s instructor.

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This year the team decided to us a college theme since some of them will be going off to college.

The judges liked it so much, the team was awarded a trophy, $1,000 prize and of course bragging rights.

But team member Bennett Gathje, says it wasn’t easy getting first place, "We've put in a lot of hours. If you would combine each person's hours, probably a couple hundred.”

Nora says that's estimated for each person, "The nine students that I have, it's like traveling with nine MacGyvers.  If you hand them some hot glue and some duct tape, they can make anything. The reason I love Rube Goldberg is because it's creative, it's unlike any other program that I’ve ever been involved in."

"You get a lot of teamwork skills and social skills. You can talk to people a lot better after doing the competition. You learn a lot of science and engineering things,” said Nolan Salerno, who is a senior and team member.  

Bennett agrees, “Problem-solving. You would build something and it may not work. You have to build something else. You tweak it, so it works perfectly.”

Team member Mikaela Kohlmeyer says it’s those skills the seniors are hoping to leave behind for future competitions.

"Over the years we've learned a lot about the best way to build the machine and present it so I think they will have learned from and what we've improved on over the years."

The team says it plans to use the money it won to compete next year. 

KAAL-TV

Copyright 2018 - KAAL-TV, LLC A Hubbard Broadcasting Company

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