The Invention Convention in Tennessee is an initiative to bring invention education into Tennessee schools and to celebrate the young inventors with a statewide event. For more than 25 years, Middle Tennessee State University has hosted the annual statewide Invention Convention.
The Invention Convention, held each spring, is an annual competition for public and private school fourth-, fifth-, and sixth-grade children. The overall mission is to provide a fun and dynamic way for children to engage in divergent thought. The competition requires that the students actually make their inventions using their own creative imaginations. It is hoped that the development of such inventions will help integrate many of the content areas taught in the fourth-, fifth-, and sixth-grade curricula.
Children are asked to invent a product using a specific set of parameters in one of two categories: inventions that are Games or inventions that will Make Our Lives Easier. In the Games category, students may invent games that are
entertaining and/or challenging for multiple age groups. In the Make Our Lives Easier category, students may invent devices that will potentially make living more convenient and/or more comfortable. These inventions might be for personal use or for use around the home, school, or anywhere.
The annual Tennessee Invention Convention held at MTSU is a “feeder” event for the National Invention Convention. In 2016, over 450 students competed at MTSU and 20 were awarded the opportunity to attend the National Invention Convention. Participating in the National Convention continues the fostering of higher order thinking, problem solving skills and creativity. The experience of competing at the national level further promotes application of curriculum skills involved in the invention as well as nurturing speaking and persuasive presentation skills.
For additional information or to enter individuals or groups of students, please contact Dr. Tracey R. Huddleston, Middle Tennessee State University, (615) 898-5500 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Tennessee Invention Convention is a 501(c)(3) affiliate of the non-profit STEMIE Coalition.