The Cardboard Challenge 2016 Was a Huge Success!

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Hubbard Woods hosted our second annual Cardboard Challenge yesterday.  It was a huge success!  Over 40 families participated and built everything from a giant Tie Fighter  from Star Wars to some pretty amazing robot costumes.  It was a terrific celebration of creativity and cooperation.  Our local event was a part of the Global Cardboard Challenge sponsored by the Imagination Foundation.
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I saw a lot more use of the amazing tool MakeDo this year; I’m sure that is because we took time last week to experiment with it in the Libratory.  Kids had chances to make things with the tools and that lead to even more unique and creative creations.  If your child made something and brought it home, here’s what we told them about the blue rivets.  If they keep their creation forever, then they are free to keep the rivets.  However, if they take their creation apart, please return the rivets so we can reuse them!
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Thanks to everyone who came out to play, we had more than 40 families join us! Thanks also to Sarah Graham, Denise Matthews- Smith, Angela Mak and Todd Burleson, for planning and coordinating this event for Hubbard Woods. And thank you to their volunteers, Sarah Ko, Michael Collins, Sarah Donaldson, Nat Roberts, Nidhi Singh, Maggie Beitler and Effie Karavites and several others I apologize for leaving off this list of huge thank yous!

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The Cardboard Challenge!

We are SO EXCITED that this Saturday is our second annual Cardboard Challenge!  This is part of the broader Global Cardboard Challenge powered by the Imagination Foundation. We hope that your family can make it from 2:00-4:00.  We know it isn’t an ideal time but it is quite hard to find one that works for everyone.

This year’s theme, as you probably have heard is “Make it and Take It!”  We are taking some time this week in IDEA Lab to plan our designs and learn how to use the tools that will be available on Saturday.

The biggest tool is Makedo. Makedo allows kids to easily cut cardboard and join it using rivets.  These are super cool and fairly inexpensive.  You can find out more about them and how to purchase them here.

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They even have a terrific section of their website that has ‘how to’ videos on it if for some reason your child didn’t get a chance to practice with them in the IDEA Lab this week.

 

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Here are some fun examples to show the kids to get their imagination racing!  We won’t be painting at the cardboard challenge, but there will be plenty of tape, glue scissors, lots of recyclable materials, rivets, and more.  Bring boxes or recyclables that you have stashed at home; we’ll have a ton from all the school supply orders from the school year.  We will also have sheet cardboard for families to use as well!

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Here is a video of last  year’s event!

The kids are having a blast dreaming up their ideas for Saturday and learning to use the cardboard tools!

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We hope to see you there!  And if you can’t make it, we hope that this post inspires some creativity in your house!

Our First Ever PARENTS Only Open House!

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This week was our first ever Parents Only Open House at the Hubbard Woods IDEA Lab. Last year was an overwhelming success!  We had students manning each station and the response was overwhelming.  While fewer people attended this session, those who came were curious and enjoyed having the chance to see the tools and resources their students had access to.  They were impressed and looking forward to seeing how Seesaw Digital Portfolios played into the documentation of the learning of all students in the space.  They can’t wait for me to grant access to their student’s portfolios!

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We set up several stations for the parents to explore:

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Parents seemed drawn to the 3D printers; for many this was their first time seeing one in action.  It was fun describing some of our plans for them this year and explaining how they work.  They also enjoyed meeting Mr. Codell, our new tech associate who demonstrated how Bloxels worked.  Bloxels was one of the most coveted raffle prizes of the night!

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The most dazzling station was, however, the Augmented Reality Sandbox.  If you are interested in building one yourself, you can visit the University of California Davis website where Professor Oliver Kreylos has everything you might need!

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The students built a ‘house’ for the open house.   They used their absolute favorite tool, Rigamajig.  Rigamajig was the unanimous resource by both older and younger students through the first year of our IDEA Lab.  We are so excited that Rigamajig has decided to share with us two of the first sets of new tool extensions for the building sets: they are gears, cranks, chains and more.  In two weeks, our first grade students will video chat with Cas Hollman, the creator of Rigamajig, to share their ideas for ‘tweaking’ the carts that we use to store the building tool.  It’s been amazing watching some of the youngest students working through the design thinking process.

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On October 8th, we are hosting our second annual Cardboard Challenge.  I have been constructing my Halloween costume and am using it to teach the students a few ‘tricks’ of the trade when it comes to ‘joining’ cardboard together.  We love the tool Makedo because it essentially lets you ‘rivet’ two piece of cardboard together.  There are some amazingly cool tools that come with the kits: a combo saw/punch and a screwdriver that can both take rivets out as well as crank them in.

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The parents were curious how I had built it so I put the top piece of my robot samurai costume on to show them.  The chest piece fits on like a suit of armor.  I slide it on from the back and need my ‘armor paige’ to help me by fastening velcro loops on the back.  The velcro loops are conveniently hidden by my empty cheese ball containers that are painted to look like rocket packs!

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The final station I want to highlight was the collaborative string art project.  This idea came to me after a mission trip to Detroit this summer with my own children.  At a church where we stayed, there were two beautiful nail art projects that got my mind racing.  I knew I had to have our students make something like this at Hubbard Woods.  The result was a large, rectangular ‘canvas’ that had nearly 200 nails in it.  The idea is that each person will tie off on a nail and then make ten random connections to other nails.  It will take us quite a while to get every student, parent and teacher to add their connections to it, but the finished product is sure to be stunning.

 

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The whole point of the evening was to get parents in the space and see what’s possible.  We also hoped to encourage parents to sign up to volunteer with their student’s class.  We had tremendous parent participation last year.  Parents learned to hang back and watch their students learn and I modeled effective intervention (only as last resort and even then pose questions to kids rather than telling them ‘how’ to do it.)

I would say it was a fantastic success and it gives me tremendous hope for what is possible this year!  Thank you to all the fantastic parents who came and volunteered!