A competitive Elementary Science Olympiad (ESO) for Grades 3-6 will not only get kids in the district ready for the nationally-competitive Division B program, it's also a wonderful supplement to any school's science curriculum. At the same time you cover the skeletal system, students preparing for an ESO contest can study A is for Anatomy or No Bones About It. Many teachers use the competitive ESO events to add a hands-on element to their classroom schedule.
Of the nearly 100 events in the ESO tournament manual, most schools generally choose between 10 and 16 for a standard, day-long tournament. Just like the Division B and Division C set up, schools form a team, register, are assigned events to prepare for, and compete against other teams for medals, ribbons and in some cases, state trophies. There is no ESO National Tournament, nor is there a national fee to participate in ESO. Each school, district or state may charge its own fee, however.
A competitive ESO tournament allows teams to receive the type of support from the media and community normally reserved for athletic teams, and it's a nice way for kids to feel the joy of succeeding in a team endeavor. Some excellent examples of ESO tournaments across the US can be found in:
- Los Angeles, California
- Michigan (Macomb County)
- Elementary Coaching Handbook prepared by Macomb Science Olympiad
- North Carolina