This is not
just an invention contest, nor an exhibition of inventions. It is an educational project
launched by the Argentine Association of Inventors during the school year 1997-1998. Such
an educational project is focused on the promotion of inventive thinking among youth. (Two
categories: 8 to 14 and 15 to 20 years of age, respectively).
The competition consists
of finding the solution to three real problems of technical nature with social
implications, which have to be dealt with at the location of the competition in a maximum
of four hours. In addition, a set of theoretical questions has to be answered on general
subjects connected to the world of inventions.
During the first Invention Olympiad more than 1500 children participated nationwide in
the local, regional, and final contest (80% boys and 20% girls). Since then, the event
takes place every year, and the award ceremony is held on September 29, the Inventor's Day
The breath of educational experience, whether in conceptual matters or in the course of
classroom activities, enable the institutions , and also the motivators, coordinators and
facilitators involved in the organization of the Invention Olympiad, to guarantee proven
ability in subjects related to creativeness, inventive thinking and innovative educational
The Rules of this educational project are available in
English (5 pages).
The Operating Manual of the Invention Olympiad is an
effective source of reference and inspiration, affording theoretical and practical
guidance not only for the teachers but also for the participants and members of the judges
panels. In it they will find the advice, suggestions, examples and recommendations that
will make possible the applications in every educational establishment of basic and
further training programs for all the participants. The English text of this document has
It is very probable that many teachers are assailed by doubts and questions when faced
with subjects such as technology, science, inventions and innovations, not having the
possibility of making conceptual distinctions or speculating on practical applications in
The objectives and procedures of the Invention Olympiad to a large extent correspond,
and are complementary, to those of the "Technology Classes" in many schools all
over the world.
However, if we are to implement technology as more of a classroom activity, and also if
we are to take part successfully in the Invention Olympiad, we have to reply clearly to
questions such as:
These and many other questions are bound to come to the minds of teachers and
participants who have not been given prior experience or training on the subjects
concerned. If we fail to give clear and precise answers, it is highly possible that
attempts to introduce technology and inventive thought as beneficial classroom activities
will come to nothing.
The world of rapid change that we live in, and the daily challenges that mankind has to
face and overcome, oblige us to take charge of motivating and training new generations. In
order to do this, implement sound ethical commitment to the community, and to take a
responsible attitude towards caring for our planet, we have to uphold the steadfast
conviction that "a better world is possible" and that "where there is a
problem, there is an opportunity".