Why should I host a Cardboard Challenge?
Because creativity is the most critical skill for the future! And the Global Cardboard Challenge is one of the best ways to foster it. Oh, and also, because it’s really fun!

By hosting a Cardboard Challenge, you are joining our global community of parents, teachers, and business and nonprofit leaders who are helping us realize our mission of fostering creativity and entrepreneurship in kids.

The Cardboard Challenge is a fun, easy to organize learning experience that fosters creativity and other 21st century skills. Skills like:

• ingenuity and resourcefulness
• perseverance
• collaboration and teamwork
• critical thinking

Give it a try!

What Is Creative Play?
The Cardboard Challenge is an effective way to engage children in Creative Play. Creative Play is a learning experience that results in the creation of an original artifact made by children using whatever resources are available. It begins with inspiration, and culminates in the sharing of a creation in a meaningful public context. Creative Play engages a child’s creative faculties and helps to teach a number of 21st century skills.
When Is the Global Cardboard Challenge?
The Global Cardboard Challenge is a global campaign inspired by the short film, Caine’s Arcade. At the heart of the Challenge is an opportunity for children to build whatever they can dream up using cardboard, recycled materials and imagination. You can plan a Challenge to take place over multiple days or weeks, or as a one day party. Some Challenges involved intricate ideation and design stages, before kids build prototypes; other Challenges are total free-for-alls as kids build and play.

Although Cardboard Challenges can take place any time of year in any context (e.g., schools, homes, wherever), during the fall the Challenge coincides with Imagination’s Day of Play, a special day in early October that commemorates the flash mob that came out to make Caine’s day in the short film. It’s a opportunity for communities to come together to celebrate child imagination.

How do I host a Cardboard Challenge?
Hosting a Cardboard Challenge is simple and fun! All you need is a location (e.g., a classroom, local park, backyard, driveway, community center), kids (show them ‘Caine’s Arcade‘ to get them inspired), cardboard and recycled materials, and some imagination.

A Cardboard Challenge can happen in school or outside school. If you’re a parent, host one in your backyard with friends and family, or team up with a local school, business, nonprofit or other community organization. If you’re an educator, organize a Cardboard Challenge with your class, or get the entire school school involved. You can also host a Challenge for the kids in your after-school club or youth organization or through your company. Check out a few of the resources available on this site, and join the Facebook Group, “Global Cardboard Challenge for Everyone.”

How can my school participate?
Any school, organization, or individual can host and organize a Cardboard Challenge at any time. If you are doing a Cardboard Challenge in the fall, please mark your calendars for the Day of Play, which is a great culmination (this year, it’s October 1st). Share the opportunity with your school, teacher, principal, superintendent, and/or other parents to help bring the Global Cardboard Challenge to your community.
How do I share pictures/videos and connect with other Global Cardboard Challenge participants?
Tag your photos/videos/posts with @imagination and the official #CardboardChallenge hashtag on Instagram, Facebook & Twitter.

Remember to join our Facebook Group to share ideas, tips & suggestions, photos and videos, stories and reflections with other Organizers.

Can we fundraise?
If you’d like to use your Cardboard Challenge to fundraise for Imagination.org, please do! You could also fundraise for another organization of your choice. One popular way to fundraise is to sell “fun passes” at your event, for community members to purchase.
Are there guidelines for promoting my Cardboard Challenge?
Just a few below. The rest is up to you!

Naming Your Event

As there may be multiple events in a city, it’s a good idea to name your Challenge something specific, e.g. [Your Organization’s] Awesome Cardboard Challenge or ‘[Your Organization’s] Cardboard Arcade Extravaganza, etc.., If you are thinking about hosting a large city-wide event, email hello@imagination.org to see if there is already an event being planned in your city.

Raising Money

We insist that all Cardboard Challenges affiliated with Imagination.org are not-for-profit events. If you sell Fun Passes, tickets, etc, proceeds can be used to raise money for school programs or donated to a charity or nonprofit. Past Cardboard Challenge events have either been free or raised funds for various great causes, including local food banks, community gardens, library and school programs, childhood cancer research, gorilla habitats and Imagination.org!

If we can’t host a Day of Play on the October date, can we still participate?
Of course! For the 2022 Day of Play, we’ve chosen October 1, 2022 to celebrate the anniversary of the flash mob that came out to make Caine’s day. If you can’t do your event that Saturday, just choose a day around then that works for you and your school or organization.
What is the mission of Imagination.org?
Imagination.org was inspired by the global response to the ‘Caine’s Arcade‘ short film. We’re a nonprofit with a mission to find, foster and fund creativity and entrepreneurship in children around the world to raise a new generation of innovators and problem solvers who have the tools they need to build the world they imagine. Learn more about our projects here: http://imagination.org/our-projects/.
What is the Design for Change Cardboard Challenge?
The Design for Change (DFC) Cardboard Challenge is an opportunity to approach cardboard creativity through the lens of Feel, Imagine, Do, Share (FIDS), DFC’s simplified version of the design thinking process. This approach highlights empathy (Feel) in the creative process. The DFC Cardboard Challenge incorporates certain “constraints” that are designed to ramp up a child’s feelings in the creative process, increasing their resourcefulness, patience, and reliance on each other.

Register for the DFC Cardboard Challenge on the Cardboard Challenge homepage by selecting the ‘I want to take the DFC Cardboard Challenge’ checkbox and download the DFC Cardboard Challenge Playbook for tips and ideas. Don’t forget to share with the world using the hashtags #CardboardChallenge and #DFC. Read more about Design for Change here.