Monday, July 28, 2014

Seminary students turn cardboard into smiles

Recycled boxes become games at ‘A Global Day of Play’

October 05. 2013 10:10PM
EILEEN GODIN Times Leader Correspondent

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FORTY FORT — Skee Ball, air hockey and basketball toss sound like the run-of-the-mill arcade games, but Wyoming Seminary Lower School students made them out of cardboard and invited the community to come and play Saturday morning.

The event, called the Cardboard Challenge Global Day of Play, is a national event offered through the Imagination Foundation, said Gail Smallwood, Wyoming Seminary Lower school associate director of public relations.

By registering at, Smallwood said the school became a host of the event.

“Any school or group could register to host the event,” she said.

Smallwood said students from pre-school to eighth grade designed and made games with reused cardboard. The free event ran from 9 to 11:30 a.m. Saturday.

Children were invited to make their own games in the cafeteria where a wall with cardboard boxes awaited transformation. Seminary Upper School students aided the children in the construction process and helped moving the finished game into the gym for play.

Although there were no flashing lights, the brilliance of the children’s imaginations filled the gym. No electronic game sounds were needed. The air was filled with talking and laughter as gamers made their way around the gym.

Rachel Bartron, director of the Louis Maslow STEM School at Wyoming Seminary, said about 44 children registered for the event. There were about 40 different games to test the skills of young and older players.

“I am very happy with the turn out,” said Dr. Clair Hornung, dean of the Wyoming Seminary Lower School. “We will plan to do it again next year.”

Walking around the gym, Kieran Sherry, 9, Kingston, greeted participants as Iron Man. He designed the costume himself, completely out of cardboard.

Student Nathan Tindell, 12, Kingston, made a Skee Ball game that was longer than he was tall. As he was tracking the top scores, he said he made a claw machine where players could hook onto a plastic toy using a ribbon with a hook on the end. They then had to carefully move the ribbon through a slot and shake the toy loose to pick it up.

Tindell said he enjoyed making the games and discovered he could “make awesome things with cardboard”.

Oliver Lew, 11, and his sister, Lucy, 8, Dallas, both students of Wyoming Seminary Lower School, made a board game called Relic Rush. It was modeled after Oliver’s favorite iPad game.

The children put a lot of thought into their game. Each square on a path had different directions. A spinner was used to determine the amount of spaces a player could advance.

“The hardest part was figuring out what to write on the squares,” Oliver said.

Many of the components of the Cardboard Challenge are part of the school’s curriculum. Jill Carrick, Wyoming Seminary Lower School science chairperson, said the event “combines all that we do with the STEM program with real life experience.”

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