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Code breaking and creation fun at Decathlon

da Vinci Decathlon - Year 5 

Wenona’s success in Science, technology, Engineering and mathematics (STEM) has continued with Year 5 students placing second in the Engineering Challenge of the da Vinci Decathlon.

Held annually, the Decathlon is an academic competition designed to challenge and stimulate the minds of school students who compete in teams of eight across 10 disciplines – Engineering, Mathematics and chess, code breaking, Art and poetry, Science, English, philosophy, creative producers, cartography and general knowledge. Wenona teams from Years 5, 6, 7 and 9 all took part in the day, but it was the year 5 team who most impressed with the wind turbine they designed and constructed in line with the day’s ‘power’ theme.

Gifted and Talented Education Coordinator Ms Renee De Rossi said students particularly enjoyed solving the intellectually stimulating challenges, working within their areas of strength, and collaborating with their team members to complete each task.

“The Da Vinci Decathlon is one of many academic extra-curricular activities offered at Wenona, designed to stretch the minds of motivated and passionate learners,” Ms De Rossi said.

“The competition is not only a fantastic event for encouraging team work and perseverance, but also helps to raise students’ awareness of educational possibilities and careers. Year 5 were particularly delighted to gain second place in Engineering, with the wind turbine they created regarded highly.”

Year 5 student Melissa said Engineering was the best part of the challenge.

“The most enjoyable aspect was probably Engineering since I love designing, especially in school assignments,” she said. “Designing a wind turbine was really fun because you had to look at all the aspects and requirements so you could complete the task.

"I also really like code breaking, especially when we finally cracked the code after we had tried and tried and tried over again.”