Tonawanda News — Young innovators filled the halls of Fletcher School on Tuesday afternoon to participate in Tonawanda’s first invention convention for a chance to advance to a regional competition.
“It’s a great incentive for the students, and it’s an opportunity for the kids to go above and beyond,” said Amber Reding, an enrichment teacher who organized the event.
Forty students who chose to participate in the competition followed a set criteria and worked with their families to create a new invention or improve upon something that had already been created. On Tuesday, the fourth- and fifth-graders presented their creations to their peers, who asked questions about the inventions and entered a “People’s Choice” vote.
Three judges, including Principal John McKenna, also evaluated the entries and decided which students will attend the Western New York Invention Convention, set for May 4 at Medaille College.
“What I’m looking for is creativity — something that has never been thought of before — or an invention that could be taken to fruition and be made into something real. I’ve seen a lot of things really could do that,” he said.
Fifth-graders Emma Abdula and Devin Galleciez were inspired by an episode of Nickelodeon’s TV show iCarly, in which the characters invent a shoe that heats up for runners when it’s cold outside.
“We were talking about the show, but we wanted to do something different because they had already invented the heated shoe,” Emma said. “So we decided to have the shoe cool down, too.”
Emma and Devin inserted a fan into the shoe, and both the heat and the cooling systems are powered by a rechargeable battery.
“The buttons would be right on the back of the shoe, so all you’d have to do is pick up your foot and push one of them while you’re running,” Devin said.