Prairie Mars Rover Team earns honors
Prairie Middle School students competed this year in the Idaho Tech 2005 Mars Rover Challenge held at the University of Idaho on April 27th.  The Mars Rover Moonstruck Assassinators at the Speed Drive.  DJ Walker, Tucker Stefan, Mikey Karel, Mitchel Jungert, and Jarett Frei.Challenge competition involves Rover designs constructed by middle school teams from throughout North Idaho from Lego kits and certain other allowable non-Lego materials such as plastic, paper, or metal sheets.  Teams compete on several rigorous competitive hands on courses that are designed to put the skills of the Rover designs and the operators to the ultimate test.  Teams also compete in team project presentation, budget analysis, team time management, and lab notebook records, which are the backbone of any true science project.
This year, Prairie fielded three teams of fifth and six graders.  Prairie’s Bigger Midgets team (5th graders Troy Lorentz and Josh Zigler, and returning 6th graders Kylee Simmons and Silas Whitley) took top honors in the Lab Notebook part of the competition with their project records, timelineBigger Midgets  Front: Joshwa Zigler and Troy Lorentz Back:  Silas Whitley, Kylee Simmons and Mr. Deiss charts and budget analysis.  The Moonstruck Assassinators  (5th graders Tucker Stefan and Jarett Frei, and 6th graders Mikey Karel, DJ Walker and Mitchel Jungert) with only one returning competitor from last year, Mikey, did a good job on their poster presentation and display and learned a lot for next year!  The third Prairie team was the Spongians (5th graders Nick Creutzberg, Kyle Uhlenkott, and Josh Roeper, and 6th graders, Seth Guyer and returnee, Garrett Workman), which did a fantastic job on their Blind Drive, where they earned a perfect 10 score!
The goal of the Prairie Teams was to beat the score of last year’s rookie Prairie Middle School Mars Rover team in the U of I challenge, and to do so without what is called a “catastrophic failure” in the competition. .  These budding young engineers are learning some valuable skills for the future through their extracurricular science project work. Good job Midgets, Spongians, and Assassinators!  
Spongians Mitchel Jungert, Mikey Karel, Jarett Frei, and DJ Walker, Tucker Stefan and Diana Holubetz (the group leader) are not shown.

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