Future Problem Solving

Magellan students will participate in the Global Issues and Scenario Writing components of Future Problem Solving. This international program will help our students develop the skills of teamwork, written and verbal communication, research, critical and creative thinking, analysis, synthesis and evaluation. Students will apply these skills to situations that are set in the future but based on current research. The focus of FPS is on teaching students how to think, not what to think.
Students work in teams of four or five to research and study various topic areas. They will then complete a problem-solving booklet based on a Future Scene written about the topic of study. A team of evaluators reads the booklets and provides extensive written feedback focused on improvement of writing and thinking skills. All of the problem solving work is based on the Creative Problem Solving process that can applied to complex situations in education, business, community, and personal situations. Students will identify challenges (1), select and underlying problem (2), produce solution ideas (3), select criteria (4), apply criteria (5), and develop an action plan (6).
All Magellan students will participate in the process for two practice problems in the fall and early winter. All students will also complete the qualifying problem for the State Bowl competition; however, some students may choose to participate non-competitively. From that point on, all students will still research, study, and discuss the topic for the State Bowl, but only qualifying teams and individuals will attend the State Bowl in the spring. Any teams or individuals who advance to the International Conference will continue to prepare for that competition through the end of the school year. Magellan teachers will determine teams, and it is likely we will adjust these teams as we progress through the practice problems. Once teams are set for the state qualifying problem, they will remain the same.
Details on State Bowl
Students who qualify for the State Bowl will attend the competition April 27-29 at Green Lake Conference Center. Students, teachers and chaperones will depart after school on Thursday, April 27 and return in the afternoon on Saturday, April 29. Parents: If your child is unable to attend or is not interested in competing at the State Bowl, please notify teachers as soon as possible.

Details on International Conference
Students who qualify for the International Conference will attend the competition in June at Michigan State University in East Lansing, Michigan. When participants are determined, travel details will be finalized.  Parents: If your child is unable to attend or is not interested in competing at the International Conference, please notify teachers prior to our departure for the State Bowl on April 27.

Scenario Writing
All students will also have the opportunity and be encouraged to compete individually in Scenario Writing. Students develop short stories related to one of the topics. The story is set at least 20 years into the future and is an imagined but logical outgrowth of actions or events taking place in the world today. The story should focus on one main character and develop that character through the plot of the story. Through scenario writing, students will enrich their critical thinking and creative writing skills. The top three scenarios are published in a booklet and authors are invited to attend the State Bowl to receive their awards and read their stories. First and second place stories are submitted for international level competition.

Calendar of Events

October 28, 2016, Submit Practice Problem 1

December 23, 2016, Submit Practice Problem 2

February 22, 2017, Submit State Qualifying Problem

April 27-29, 2017, State Bowl, Green Lake, Wisconsin

June 7-11, 2017, International Conference, La Crosse, WI


Educational Disparities, Practice Problem 1
It's All in the Genes, Practice Problem 2
3D Printing, State Qualifying Problem
Identity Theft, State Bowl Problem
TBA, International Conference Problem
FPS Links
Wisconsin FPS Program
FPS International