Monday, January 13, 2020 is the due date for all Nova East Odyssey of the Mind team registrations and payments for our regional meet on March 14, 2020 at West Potomac H.S.  Prior to registering your team, you must register a judge that will represent your team by attending judges’ training on February 29 and spend all day on March 14 judging other teams for our region.  As an all-volunteer organization, the meet cannot run without committed volunteers to serve these roles.

 If you haven’t secured a judge for your team, first ask the parents of the team members if one of them would be willing to step up.  While it will mean they will be unable to see their child perform on March 14, it is a very important way they can contribute.  If no one is able to make that commitment, have them ask other family members (18 and up), neighbors, friends, or teachers.

Once you have a judge, they will need to register online using the link from our website on the registration page. The coach or coordinator may want to sit with the judge to help them register since they may want to know a little bit more about the type of problems they may want to pick to judge: however, coaches, please do NOT register your judge for them.  It is important they do it so they are able to give some preference as to what they will judge.  Make they click YES for representing the team and have the accurate information to fill out the information below.

Schools also need to find other volunteers to register to work for 2 hours at the regional meet helping with concessions, team check-in, and other important roles.  Many parents/teachers/friends are willing to fill this small role, and these people are also crucial to the success of the day.  They also will need to register online, and they will be contacted prior to the event to let them know the time slot and position.

Last Call for Balsa Workshop Participants!

REGISTRATION DEADLINE: Friday 12/6/2019 at 6:00 p.m.

Come “take a break” with other Odyssey of the Mind Balsa Problem teams and learn about structural engineering through hands-on activities.

Sunday, Dec. 8, 2019, from 1 to 3 PM

Glebe Elementary School

1770 N Glebe Road, Arlington, VA 22207

Most supplies will be provided (although participants should bring a notebook, pencil, and a can of vegetables!)

Participants must be accompanied by a coach or parent.

COST: $7.50 per participant

SIGN-UP and PAYMENT in advance required:


Check out the resources for coordinators just added to the Resources Page!


This year at Coaches’ Training we sold Spontaneous Problem Solving kits which included a problem per week until the meet.  The cost is $25 per kit.  If you are interested in purchasing one, use the link below.  Or, you may want to ask your PTA to fund the purchase of one per team for your school!  It’s a great way for them to support all the hard work you are doing!


Also, we’re interested in finalizing our numbers for balsa basics workshop on December 8th at Glebe E.S. from 1-3 p.m.  Please sign up if your team may be interested in trying the balsa structure problem.  The workshop fee is $7.50 per person and the link to sign up is:

Consider Problem 4: The Balsa Structure Problem

Has your team read the Balsa Limbo problem and said, “Hey, that sounds fun, but I have no idea how to build with balsa wood!” ?

Well, guess what?  Nova East Odyssey of the Mind will be holding their first ever Balsa Basics Workshop to help kids and coaches learn a little bit about building with balsa.  If your team is curious about it for this year or even next year, please sign up and come have fun breaking things.

Balsa Basics


Updated Resources & Registration Pages

Once your team members are set and they’ve chosen their problem, you can have your judge register themselves online and coaches can register their team for the regional meet on March 14, 2020.  Your school also needs to register volunteers who will work for 2 hours at the regional meet to help the event run smoothly.  Remember judges and teams MUST register by January 13, 2020 so as not to incur late fees.

We have also updated the resource page on our website with some documents that coaches may find helpful:

  • Outside Assistance Tips
  • Coaches’ Training Intro ppt.
  • Coaches’ Training handout
  • Beginning Coaches’ Training ppt.
  • Primary Odyssey Team Sample 3-Day Plan
  • Spontaneous Coaching Docs

NOVA EAST Odyssey Spontaneous Kit Available for Purchase at Coaches’ Training

Our exclusive spontaneous kit includes materials and descriptions for twenty spontaneous problems, including seven verbal, seven hands-on and six verbal hands-on, as well as suggestions for alternatives and extensions. The problems are arranged loosely in order of complexity so you can give your team more challenging problems as their creativity skills develop. This kit includes a range of materials from washers, nails, rubber bands to a pop tube, ping pong balls, and a stretchy noodle. You can’t get this kit or its problems anywhere else! Reserve your kit online at and pick up your kit at Coaches’ Training this Saturday at St. Louis Catholic School, or take a peek and purchase it there!

Online Registration for Coaches Training

Coaches’ Training is coming up this Saturday.  If you are interested in signing in and paying ahead of time, you are welcome to do so and avoid the long line on Saturday morning!  Here is the link:

Coaches’ Training Coming Up!

Our region, Nova East, will be holding our annual Coaches’ Training on Saturday, November 16, 2019 at St. Louis Catholic School on Popkins Lane in Alexandria from 8:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m.  The cost is $25 per coach payable in cash, credit or check made out to Nova East Odyssey of the Mind.  A light breakfast will be served.  You do not need to register for our training; however, we do ask coordinators to give us a ballpark number so we know about how many coaches to expect so please let them know if you plan to attend.

If you are unable to make that training date, another region will be having their training on November 9, 2019, Nova South, Region 12, will be having a training at Liberty Middle School, 6801 Union Mill Rd. Clifton, VA 20124.  It will be from 8:30-2:30 and also costs $25; however, you are required to register online at:

Nova East Odyssey of the Mind Coordinators’ Meeting

Tuesday evening, September 24, 2019, we will be holding a school coordinators’ meeting at Campbell Elementary School from 7:00-8:30 p.m. in the library.  Parking and entrance is around the back near the parking lot.  Please enter through Door 1.

This year, Christine Headrick, Glebe’s Coordinator, will be joining Pam Clark to share some ways to beef up your coordination efforts.  So, if you’ve come before, you may want to come again to get some new ideas for how to support the teams at your school!


*Tuesday, September 24  Coordinators’ Meeting at Campbell Elementary at 737 S. Carlin Springs Dr. in Arlington from 7:00-8:30 p.m. in the library  (Park in the back lot near the playground and enter through Door 1.)

Saturday, Nov. 16, 2019 Coaches’ Training at St. Louis Catholic School at 2901 Popkins Lane in Alexandria  from  8:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m.

*Monday, January 13 Coaches’ Meeting at Campbell Elementary at 737 S. Carlin Springs Dr. in Arlington from 7:00-8:30 p.m. beginning in the library

Saturday, Feb. 29, 2020 Judges’ Training at St. Louis Catholic School at 2901 Popkins Lane in Alexandria

8:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m. (Snowdate:  Sat. March 7, 2020)

Saturday, March 14, 2020 Nova East Regional Tournament at West Potomac High School at 6500 Quander Rd. in Alexandria All Day

Mark Your Calendars


Coaches’ TrainingSat. Nov. 16, 2019 at St. Louis Catholic School at 2901 Popkins Lane in Alexandria from 8:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m.

Judges’ Training:  Sat. Feb. 29, 2020 at St. Louis Catholic School at 2901 Popkins Lane in Alexandria from 8:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m.  (Snowdate:  Sat. March 7, 2020)

NoVA East Odyssey of the Mind Regional Tournament:  Sat. March 14, 2020  at West Potomac High School at 6500 Quander Rd. in Alexandria; all day!

(The Late September Coordinators’ Meeting and January Coaches’ Meeting which are typically held at Campbell Elementary School in Arlington will be scheduled soon and those dates will be posted.)