Thursday, August 17, 2017
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Our History and Milestones

In the 1980s and 1990s, there were considerable efforts in Connecticut schools to better identify and serve all students, at both ends of the spectrum. Both Special Education and Gifted Education were addressed by law and programming blossomed in many Connecticut schools. For the Gifted and Talented, at our universities and in our schools, educators sought a variety of specialized activities to address multiple intelligences and talents.
In an effort to network and consolidate efforts, a teacher group called CENTAG (Connecticut Educators Network for Talented and Gifted) formed and met to share good ideas and programs. Some were wider use of earlier offerings, such as Great Books and Debate League. Others included the organization of a statewide literary magazine and encouragement for national/international competitions such as Future Problem Solving and Olympics of the Mind. Still others addressed mathematics (i.e. Math Counts) and science (i.e. Girls in Science).
Connecticut Invention Convention (CIC) was established in 1983 by Michele Munson, a teacher of the Gifted and Talented in Farmington, and other teachers interested in looking for a product-oriented avenue of creativity, an integrated school unit of instruction that would benefit many different kinds of learners. Over time and under Ms. Munson's leadership and perseverance, Connecticut Invention Convention went mainstream.
It was decided to focus on K-8 grades exclusively in order to provide proper foundations and attitudes to encourage involvement in science and engineering in later course choices.

Historically, as far back as CIC records exist, the population of girls has equaled or surpassed the number of boys each year. CIC is proud to be a driving force in STEM programming offered at appropriate grades to make a difference in gender involvement.

The co-hosting efforts of the University of Connecticut School of Engineering at Storrs begin. By providing an exciting venue for students and families, the School of Engineering brings many Connecticut families to campus for the first time and provides further affirmation that a college education for all is more than just a dream.
The Connecticut General Assembly provided a grant to CIC to begin a strategic plan for expansion. Thanks to our representatives' foresight and goodwill, we grew to over 100 schools and nearly 700 young inventors at the last state event. More underserved districts are receiving direct support from nearby businesses and what was once a simple event has transformed into a year round educational movement in support of invention, innovation and entrepreneurship.
CIC continues to develop plans and methods to reach every K-8 student once or better twice with the spirit of invention here in the State of Connecticut and, we propose, beyond our borders. With the help of the University of Connecticut and our corporate sponsors, we are implementing new teaching products, new curriculum, new regional opportunities, new software, and new flexible programming to suit every teaching environment. We believe that this exciting and fulfilling invention experience is the core of our nation’s future and we hope to promote its vision everywhere.
CIC receives two prestigious awards, the Dr. Sigmund Abeles Science Advocacy Award from the Connecticut Science Teachers Association, and the 2016 Connecticut Science Center STEM Achievement Award in recognition of outstanding contribution to STEM education in Connecticut. CIC sends the first student delegates of CIC finalists to the inaugural National Invention Convention and Entrepreneurship Expo (NICEE) competition at the USPTO Office in Washington, DC. Responding to an unprecedented growth in participation of over 250 schools and 17,000 students, CIC develops a regional events strategy for 2017, where more students will participate at one of four regional levels beyond their school's local event, prior to moving on to the state annual convention and beyond to the national invention convention.

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Connecticut Invention ConventionTM and Judging CirclesTM are trademarks of The Connecticut Invention Convention, Inc. and Imagination in Play ® is a registered trademark of The Connecticut Invention Convention, Inc.