Buildit Challenge is a 501c-3 charitable organization. Our mission is to build communities of hands-on learners engaged with inventive adaptation and improvisational play in STEM fields so they can fix, make, build, and change the world.
Buildit Challenge began in 2016 as an extracurricular construction & engineering science fair at the Wayne-Local School District. The challenge is for students to build an original game, gadget, or work of art from everyday materials like cardboard and recyclables. They bring it to an event where they share the project and their ideas with classmates. Volunteers from our community of engineers, architects, and builders review projects with students and encourage our next generation of innovators and problem solvers.
Here’s what makes Buildit Challenge different from other STEM programs:
- It’s free for participants.
- It doesn’t teach to a specific skill set like robotics, coding, or welding
- The two main “pillars” of the program are quality craftsmanship (applied technology + applied math), and "Yankee ingenuity" (recycling + improvisational engineering)
Here's a short list of stuff kids learn as they create a project for the Buildit Challenge:
• Students engage in inventive adaptation and improvisational engineering; a process we call "Yankee ingenuity".
• Students develop skills in craftsmanship, creativity, resourcefulness, perseverance, and (for many) teamwork.
• Students explore their interests and passions in design and construction, and the Buildit Challenge gives them an arena to make things that have an impact on others.
• When students talk about their projects to the volunteer reviewers, they present their ideas to a professional audience in a safe, encouraging environment.
• This event brings together hands-on learners to build a community around their talents and interests.
• The Buildit Challenge is open to all students in the educational organization in accordance with general school policy guidelines.
• There is no cost to participate or attend the event. Registration is required for projects (registration is free).
• ENTRIES MUST BE BUILT BY STUDENTS.
• Please do not use power tools in the construction of the project.
• Students can participate individually, or as a team of up to four students.
• Projects can be no larger than 5' x 5' x 5' (a five foot cube. The project should be able to fit inside a regular sized car).
• All completed entries must be brought to the event. Team members must be present during the Buildit Challenge to receive a prize.
• Students will have the opportunity to talk about their project with volunteer judges from the community during the event.
• Participation ribbons will be given to all projects, and some entries will receive special awards based on the consensus of volunteer judges.
• Winners will be announced at the event.
• All projects will go home with participants at the end of the event.
• Best Overall Entry (Grand Prize)
Awarded for merit based on consensus of volunteer judges. This prize is available for all grade levels.
• People's Choice Award
Participants receive numbered stickers at the event. While the reviewers are making their decisions, participants can vote for their favorite project with stickers. participants can not vote for their own project.
• Additional top prizes can be awarded by ability/ grade level based on availability per event.
We encourage students to be resourceful in getting their own supplies by recycling and reusing household items to create projects. Power tools are not necessary. Instead, try to choose materials and solutions that are easier for young engineers to manipulate with less hands-on guidance from adults.
Some Suggested Materials:
Re-used / Reclaimed clean food containers
Clean plastic bottles and bottle caps
Paper towel tubes
Snap Circuits, Arduino, Raspberry Pi, LittleBits, or other safe battery powered electronics
Old fabric, pillowcases or clothes cut into scraps
Bouncy balls ( small & medium) Mini basketballs
Various small toy animals, cars, ...
Clear packing tape
Brown paper bags
Glue sticks- with proper supervision.
Pink insulation foam
Buildit Challenge partners with educational organizations such as public and private schools or educational co-ops to serve their student communities.
Currently, we are able to serve the Miami Valley area including metropolitan areas of Dayton, Ohio and Cincinnati, Ohio.
Please contact us to request a Buildit Challenge for your organization.