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Seven-Year-Old Wins Imagination Playground Build-A-Thon, Donates Prize to His School

Principal Chad Carr shakes Caden Yocom's hand during school celebratory assembly

Principal Chad Carr shakes Caden Yocom’s hand during school celebratory assembly

When 7-year-old Caden Yocom learned he was the Grand Prize winner in Imagination Playground’s 2015 Build-A-Thon contest, he knew he had a big decision to make. What should he do with his award of an Imagination Playground Big Blue Blocks set?

Last month, while on a school field trip to Columbus Ohio’s Center of Science and Industry (COSI), Caden announced his decision—He would donate the blocks to his classmates at Columbus Preparatory Academy.

COSI is one of the largest modern-built science centers in the United States, and precisely where Caden created his winning Build-A-Thon build. That day, the school reported that Caden happily shared with his fellow students, “You are all getting a set of blocks of your own coming soon!”

In a recent school assembly, the Big Blue Blocks were unveiled, and Principal Chad Carr extolled the selflessness of Caden’s decision. After all, the principal explained, Caden could have kept them in his own back yard.  But that day, instead, the school was celebrating the newly delivered blocks, with which all of CPA’s students would soon be playing.

During the address, the K-8 Principal went on to thank Caden and Imagination Playground, noting that as a charter school, CPA often depended on fundraising and the generosity of its community. Also, the blocks would provide an opportunity for indoor play during the cold Ohio winters.

Upon learning of Caden’s decision to donate his prize, David Krishock, Imagination Playground President and CEO, shared his excitement and gratitude.

“Caden has shown a remarkable degree of generosity for a such a young man and we thank him,” he said. “We’re sure the teachers and parents of CPA are just as excited as we are, knowing that all of Caden’s classmates will benefit from creative play.”

“As the Grand Prize winner, Caden and his parents will also receive a trip to Imagination Playground Park in New York,” Mr. Krishock added. “I’m looking forward to watching him build when he arrives.”

Imagination Playground’s Build-A-Thon invites kids 2-10 to create with Imagination Playground Big Blue Blocks, and submit images of their builds to win prizes.  In addition to competing with physical build entries, a digital prize category allows children to submit screen captures of builds they create with Imagination Playground’s 3D Builder App. The Grand Prize winner receives a 105-piece Imagination Playground Big Blue Blocks set and an all-expense paid trip to the legendary Imagination Playground Park in New York City. There are also 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place prizes for both digital and physical builds—over 500 winners in all. Imagination Playground’s 2016 Build-A-Thon contest is currently underway. For build locations, how to enter, and links to download the 3D Builder App, visit: http://www.imaginationplayground.com/promotions/build-a-thon/index.html

 

 

Nance Elementary School Hosts Innovation Week

On Nance Family day, students built this vehicle.

We want to go for a ride!

So many modern educators are thinking “out of the box” when it comes to their curricula, and we love observing this trend. A great example is Nance Elementary’s Innovation Week, recently held by the Clinton, Oklahoma elementary school.

Activities included a paper airplane flying contest, a Makerspace demo, and students collaborating about favorite inventions. Imagination Playground Big Blue Blocks took part on the Family Day, where parents were invited to design and build with the children.

Now that’s what we call creative play!

Imagination Playground thanks Principal Janalyn Taylor for sharing these images with us on Twitter.

 

4th Graders Step Up to Blue Block Bug Design Challenge

"Shark Bug"

“Shark Bug”

What’s made of Big Blue Blocks and looks like a hornet?

SCE4 Messenger Brothers will be happy to show you!

They’re a duo of 4th grade classes at Dublin City Schools in Ohio, engaging together in a variety of creative S.T.E.M. related activities.

We spotted them over on Twitter, tweeting about their “Imagination Playground Design Challenge” to “Design a New Bug Species.”

The project produced many clever “Blue Block creatures,” including something “similar to a hornet,” a Shark Bug, One-Eyed Bug, and a Water Bug—complete with male and female versions!

Visiting their blog, we were entertained by a “colony” of other fascinating (not-necessarily-bug-related) projects, including an energy challenge where students were given a choice between building a penguin hut or an eco-friendly toy project!

We really got a charge out of that one.

D’oh! Did we really say that?! Keep up the good work kids!