Global Cardboard Challenge

Many of use were inspired with the story of Caine’s Arcade blasted into the mainstream.  The original video nearly moved me to tears and definitely got me thinking about the role of play in learning.  If you haven’t watched the original, stop reading this and go watch it!

To celebrate the one year anniversary of the flash mob they hosted for Caine, they are organizing a Global Cardboard Challenge.  Hundreds of people are hosting play parties where kids can get together and MAKE with cardboard.  It’s about creativity, fun and more than anything, play.  You can signup on the site to host your own event, or find one to attend nearby (sounds kind of like the VirtCon actually).

Aiden and I went to a Maker Faire outside Chicago recently, and despite being surrounded by robots, 3D printers and homemade go-carts, what did he want to spend the entire time doing?  Hanging in the cardboard tent making things.  In about two hours, we made a cannon (with wheels, handles and a dashboard) and a set of wings, complete with a jet-propelled rocket pack on the back.  Materials included cardboard and tape.  LOTS of tape.  That’s about it.  Since then, we’ve been saving boxes, tape and other miscellaneous ‘trash’ like empty two liter bottles, prescription bottles, scrapes of hoses from other projects, and anything else that could be recycled with a little imagination.

Take a look at the followup video to Caine’s Arcade (below) and let us know if you’re planning to participate!



  1. Lindsay Graham said:

    We are a group of 100 grade 4 students at Millgrove School in Parkland School Division that will be participating in the Cardboard challenge. Today the students eagerly brought in their cardboard… we have a mountain of recycled materials and boxes ready to be assembled next Monday. Check out our blog at We will have to do our arcade a bit earlier due to our Thanksgiving holiday but I’m sure some will be participating at home on the 6th. This is an exciting time in learning with the ability to participate with others around the world. We are so excited to share our experiences and build our creativity as we become cardboard masters. Thank you for the videos they are inspirational… Caine is an amazing boy who has generated a lot of excitement at our school !

  2. Steve Dembo said:

    That’s way too cool Lindsay! Thanks for the link to your blog. Sounds like an absolute blast, look forward to more pics 🙂

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