SMP – prerequisite
The Society of American Military Engineers’ Student Mentoring Program (SMP) is designed to stimulate secondary school students’ interest and excitement in engineering, architecture and related sciences. SMP is a critical thinking program that challenges students to solve real world problems in the community. The Society of American Military Engineers (SAME) and the Peter Kiewit Institute (PKI) provide teachers and students in this program with mentors from engineering/architectural fields, guidelines, teacher/ student workshops, and an authentic audience for the demonstration of student solutions. STEM skills (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math), team work, sustainable design, presentation skills, use of graphic materials, model development, cost estimating, and creative, persuasive and technical writing are all promoted in the SMP experience.
Future City – prerequisite
The Future City Competition is a national, project-based learning experience where students in 6th, 7th, and 8th grade imagine, design, and build cities of the future. Students work as a team with an educator and engineer mentor to plan cities using SimCity™ software; research and write solutions to an engineering problem; build tabletop scale models with recycled materials; and present their ideas before judges at Regional Competitions in January.
Spelling Bee Team
Each year WMS holds practices for the official WMS Spelling Bee team. The team practices to prepare for the District Spelling Bee. In the last 5 years, WMS has had 3 students go on to the National Spelling Bee.
All students enrolled at WMS take the official school wide Geography Bee qualifying test. The top 35 students in both 7th and 8th grade compete in the school Geography Bee. Each year WMS has students compete at the State Bee and for the last few years the winner of the state bee has been from the WCS system.
All students are invited to take a qualifying test for the National History Bee. The top 4 students in the school go on to the online qualifier round. Those students scoring well go onto Regional competitions. For the last 2 years all 4 students have competed in the regional competitions with many of them going on to national competitions.
All students are invited to try out to be part of the MATHCOUNTS team at WMS. MATHCOUNTS strives to engage middle school students of all ability and interest levels in fun, challenging math programs, in order to expand their academic and professional opportunities. Middle school students exist at a critical juncture in which their love for mathematics must be nurtured, or their fear of mathematics must be overcome. MATHCOUNTS provides students with the kinds of experiences that foster growth and transcend fear to lay a foundation for future success.
Quiz Bowl is a competitive, academic, interscholastic activity where players attend weekly practices and then represent Westside Middle School at tournaments. Quiz bowl questions range over the entire spectrum of middle school curriculum, and also include a certain amount of current events, sports, and popular culture. The matches feature a blend of individual competition and team collaboration, since no individual player is likely to be an expert in all subject areas. Practice is usually weekly, but often more frequently in weeks leading up to major tournaments. Most practices consist of preparing for local tournaments, but some may also include alternate activities to emphasize particular subject areas. To qualify, students take a general knowledge test and the top ten 7th graders and 8th graders make the team.WMS usually competes in three or four tournaments in the Omaha area each year. Numerous years, Quiz Bowl participants have qualified for and attended national tournaments in New Orleans and Chicago.