Team Managers

Forming a DI team and getting started can 

seem overwhelming. 

Follow these steps to help you get started.  

It is a little bit long but it covers the season from beginning to end.  Skim through it now and check back when you are ready for the next step.

Team managers collect the student registration forms and payments from each student on your team.  Grades K-2 can have up to 10 students on a team.  Grades 3-12 may have 2-7 students on each team.  

Contact Danielle Clippard at to make arrangements to drop off forms and payment.  Your team will be issued a team number and instructions to access your challenge information.  

As team manager you will be invited to attend some team manager meetings to help you get started and we will partner you with an experienced team manager with you to answer any questions that might come up as you proceed through your season.

Check out the Quick Start Guide.  Each challenge is briefly described in the flyer.  Students can use these to help them narrow down the challenges they prefer.  Once they make a decision they can then read over the entire challenges they are interested in and make their decisions.  You will receive access to the complete challenge materials after you have registered your team and recieved your team number.

As a Team Manager read the Roadmap to help guide your team from pick a challenge to preparing to attend
Once you get started you are going to want to read over the Rules of the Road.  This document contains all the rules that your team must follow while preparing for the competition.  Most questions you may have will be answered in this document.

During the fall ask for a volunteer to be your team appraiser.  To be an appraiser you must be over 18 years of age and can not currently be attending high school.  Your appraiser MUST attend a 1/2 day training, even if they have appraised before.  Your appraiser needs to be available to appraise at the Regional Tournament and if you move on they need to be able to appraise at the State Tournament as well.  Team parents that are not coaching make great appraisers.  So do college students.  If you choose a parent to appraise they need to be aware they will be working most of the day and most likely not available to watch their student perform.  At each tournament if you are unable to provide an appraiser you will have to pay a $200 fee to be able to participate.  Having an appraiser is a VERY important part of the DI process.  For training dates see the calendar on this website.

In December Michigan DI hosts a Team Manager Workshop AND a Team Instant Challenge Workshop.  See the calendar on this website for dates and more information.  Each team manager must sign up their team if you plan to attend.  The cost of $10/person will be paid by the participants at the event.   Because Team Managers will be attending their own workshop separate from the team.  The students must have an adult chaperone with them while attending their sessions.  The chaperone is not charged to attend.

In early January you will be contacted to complete your teams registration for the Regional Tournament.  Hang on to the student registration forms you had your student fill out at the beginning of the year.  They contain all the info you will need to register.  Once you complete your online registration let the TCM coordinators know so we can submit your Regional Tournament payment.  When you register your team you will be asked for a volunteer name and email in addition to the appraiser name and email.  Seek out your volunteer ahead of time.  Generally this is a parent of a team member.  This is a chance for parents who are not team managers or appraisers to help out.  This person could also potential be an older sibling (high school aged or older)  Usually they the volunteers work a 3-4 hour shift and generally there is some flexibility for them to see their student perform in the main challenge.  However this is not guarenteed and must be worked out the other persons working as volunteers in their assigned area on the day of the tournament. Because almost all volunteers are in the same position with having children participating the program there is a spirit of cooperation among the volunteers that allows this to work out.  For example I have seen a team volunteer ask another parent from the same team to help out for the 30 minutes so that a volunteer from another can go watch their students challenge.  In return the other team will do the same for you.  However, I need to mention you can not volunteer and have small children at your side.  Volunteers need to be unencumbered and available to do the job they are assigned to.

In early January you will also receive an email with your team t-shirt information for you to confirm.  We do not order extras so please look it over carefully before confirming your order.  We also take orders for parents and siblings as well.  We love to show our support for Troy Creative Minds and all our TSD students by wearing our shirts on tournament day(s).

Wonder what to expect at the tournament.  Michigan DI created a 3:39 minute video to walk you through the entire day.  Not only is this video a great resource as a Team Manger but for students new to DI as well.  Click here for video link

Tournament days can be long days.  Depending on your start time you could be at your tournament site for 10+ hours.  To make the day a success make sure your team members and their parents are aware of this.  It is important students get plenty of rest the evening before.   Lunch and snack items are available for purchase at the tournament site.  You are also welcome to bring in food, snacks and beverages as well.  A cooler full of water and "healthier" snack items is a great idea.  Try to have them save the junk food for after your challenges.  Kids may need some down time but make sure they spend part of the day watching other teams perform challenges.  We love to fill our TCM teams rooms with other TCM teams cheering them on.  When you check in the morning of your challenge you will recieve a packet.  In the packet will be a schedule with all the teams challenge times.  Watching other teams is a great way to see what other challenges are like, who know maybe you will try something new next year.  While TCM teams do dress alike with our t-shirts we encourage some individuality as well.  Many teams create or buy matching hats, capes or other fun wearables to identify themselves as a "team".  DI tournaments are one of the few places you can be extremely creative with your appearance and be applauded for it.  Some teams have part of their performance costumes they can wear during the day.  For others it is a completely separate item they use at tournaments.  Some teams create something new each year, others teams has success when they wore a certain item so they use it at every tournament.


At the tournament there will be MANY Destination Imagination items available for sale.  T-shirts, sweatshirts, long sleeved shirts, hats and pins to name a few.  Many students collect pins each year.  (see photos below).  These same items are also available for purchase at the State Tournament.  However, you will not know if your team is advancing to the State Tournament until the closing ceremony during the Regional Tournament.  (The sales booth closes right before the closing ceremony.)  If your students progress on to Global Finals pin trading becomes a BIG part of the experience.  At the sales booth they accept cash and credit cards.(if your student advances to Global Finals you will have the opportunity to purchase pins sets when before you go to Kansas City)