A Tournament of young Minds

Crawford Preparatory Pretoria receives the Spirit of the Tournament award on 28 October.


The Tournament of Minds (Tom), a problem-solving programme, is one of the fastest growing international school tournaments taking place across Asia Pacific, with increasing involvement of new countries across the globe choosing to participate.

This year South Africa (ADvTECH) was welcomed on-board as the first country beyond Asia Pacific and given the rights to launch and host this tournament. The training of staff and students started in January and the finals were hosted at Summit College on 28 October.

The Language Literature Primary School Category was awarded to Crawford Preparatory Pretoria.

This tournament is aimed at providing youngsters with the opportunity to extend their knowledge and understandings by providing solutions to real-world open-ended problems, thereby developing the teams’ individual and group skills, thinking and communication skills, time management skills, and the expectation to have to work collaboratively to provide a solution for the challenge they wish to solve.

The finals included 13 schools with 32 teams and 240 students.

The challenges were set by Australia’s Tom Committee and expected the students to build on their knowledge and think outside the box to find solutions they could present to the judging panels.

Traci Salter, the academic strategic development advisor for ADvTECH Schools division and an international Baccalaureate Organisation (IBO) trainer, is the regional director for Tom South Africa. She was very proud of the students who represented their schools and expressed her gratitude to each of them, the facilitators, judges as well as spectators, for making this such a successful Tom event.

She emphasised the importance of connecting globally to what other educational groups are engaged in and she is excited to possibly involve more schools from across the country in the TOM 2018 Tournament.

The Crawford Preparatory Sandton Group are the winners of the trophy for Maths Engineering.

Following the expectations set for the minimal scores, teams need to achieve, participants do not automatically qualify as the winners of any section by simply having the highest scores. They need to participate in the long term and spontaneous challenges – and the total of these two scores are then aligned with the Australian expectations, to determine our potential winners.

ADvTECH were thrilled to be able to award the 2017 South African winners:

  • Maths Engineering Primary School Category was awarded to Crawford Preparatory Sandton: Team 2
  • Language Literature Primary School Category was awarded to Crawford Preparatory Pretoria: Team 2
  • Social Sciences Primary School Category was awarded to Copperleaf College: Team 1
  • Language Literature High School Category was awarded to Summit College: High School: Team 2
  • Social Sciences High School Category was awarded to Trinityhouse High Little Falls: Team 2.

Crawford Preparatory Pretoria received the Spirit of the Tournament Award. After the sad passing of their principal, Ian McLeod on Thursday, 26 October, just before the Tom tournament, the teams were given the option to withdraw from the tournament. They chose to continue participating in honour of their beloved principal. Numerous judges reported on their great spirit, positive attitude and behaviour throughout the tournament, that supported the ethos of winning this unique award which embodies the essence of what Tom is about.

For more information, please visit @TournamentofMindsSouthAfrica on Facebook

Copperleaf College was one of the schools who sent a team to the Tournament of Minds.

Were you involved in the recent Tournament of Minds? Share your stories and photos with us on the Fourways Review Facebook page.

Staff Reporter

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