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Event showcases student innovation and creativity

More than 100 kids showcased their ideas at the 11th annual Western New York Invention Convention Sunday. The event took place at Medaille College in Buffalo. It was created to promote creative thinking and encourage scientific problem solving.

This year’s ‘Invention Convention’ brought kids from kindergarten through eighth grade from 14 Western New York schools out to exhibit their innovative ideas. Director Merry Constantino said the event pushes kids to think outside the box.

“We’re giving them tools to go out into the world and be successful. In any career that they choose they’re going to recognize that a problem is just a challenge that they can overcome,” said Constantino.

Jordan Richheimer, grade 5

Students were not required to create a prototype, just a well-thought out plan with pictures. The featured ideas included a kit that helps let your friends know you’re being bullied called the ‘Bully Dozer Friend Fit’ by 5th grader Hope Grunert who won the Directors choice award.

Other inventions included a fork that keeps your food hot by 8th graders Eden Hunt and Jensen Daniels, a washer that will move your clothes into the dryer for you by 5th grader Jordan Richheimer, and a gadget that will help you find your keys by 6th grader Evan Ruttenberg.

Evan Ruttenberg, grade 6

4th grader Ruby Soudant won first place in the K-4th grade category for her invention “Taco Tape.”

“This is an edible tape that you wrap around soft tacos to keep the filling from falling out,” said Soudant.

Ruby’s mother Shasti O’leary-Soudant said empowering children to come up with solutions to their problems is very important. 

“There are some really brilliant ideas here, like some beautiful, simple, elegant ideas done by these kids and to encourage them to have a sense of ability that they can be important and improve the world is just [important.] I’m bursting right now,” said O’leary-Soudant.

All schools public, private and charter are invited to participate in the event each year. A list of some participants is below, not including some schools from Eden, Hamburg, and other localities.

Akron Central School, Akron

Buffalo Museum of Science, Buffalo

Buffalo PS #89, Buffalo

Buffalo PS #94, Buffalo

Colonial Village Elementary School, Niagara Falls

Discovery School  #67, Buffalo

F.L. Olmstead #64 at #78, Buffalo

Futures Academy #37, Buffalo

Gilmore Elementary School, North Tonawanda

Grabiarz 79, Buffalo

Kadimah, Amherst

Lakeshore Central School District, Angola

Nardin Academy, Buffalo

Nativity of Mary School, Williamsville

Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Williamsville

Notre Dame Academy, Buffalo

Olmstead Middle School, Buffalo

PineValley Elementary School, South Dayton

St. Joseph University School, Buffalo

St. Matthew Lutheran School, North Tonawanda