Elementary school students become inventors


Western Oklahoma fourth and fifth graders put their imaginations to work designing their own “doghouse of the future” as part of an engineering design challenge sponsored by Devon Energy.

Participating schools included Hinton, Okarche, Calumet and Weatherford elementary schools.  

Teams came to the competition with their blueprints prepared for the competition where Engage Learning coaches and Devon Energy engineers helped students bring their ideas to life with high-tech tools, machines and expert industry tips.   

Bart Keeton, founder and director of Engage Learning, said his team was impressed with teams’ attention to detail and investigative skills.   

“The future of dog houses is looking bright. These students worked hard to come up with original ideas,” Keeton said. “The Design+Do competition is built to empower students to think outside of the box and show they are capable of doing great things. Who knows, the next tech start-up CEO could be among this group.”  

Okarche Elementary School won first place. Their satellite-themed doghouse design featured a catapult dog-ball tosser and working doggie treadmill.   

Lee Courange, superintendent at Devon, said the company supports innovative programs that emphasize teamwork and creative problem-solving in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM).  

“Devon supports events like the Design+Do competition because we believe in investing in the future generation,” Courange said. “This competition exposes kids to career opportunities and sharpens their skills in a variety of areas such as teamwork and creativity.”