The Kids’ Science Challenge is a nationwide competition for 3rd to 6th graders that encourages hands-on participation in science and engineering. Partially funded by the National Science Foundation, the students are presented with three topics each school year and they are invited to submit their own ideas or experiments to solve these issues. The student with the winning entry in each category then collaborates with a professional scientist or engineer in a research setting to help bring their idea to life. For the 2011-2012 school year, one of the topics for the challenge was around sustainable packaging, an area in which GreenBlue has developed significant expertise through our largest project, the Sustainable Packaging Coalition (SPC). The Zero Waste challenge asked kids to come up with a creative idea for packaging that never ends up in a landfill. Over the past year, we’ve played an important role in helping to shape the Zero Waste challenge, and you can read more about GreenBlue’s participation in the challenge here and here.
The winners were announced last week, and this year’s Grand Prize Winner in the Zero Waste challenge is Joshua Yi, who is in the 3rd Grade at Warnsdorfer Elementary School in East Brunswick, NJ. Joshua came up with a nifty idea for toy packaging that actually becomes part of the fun. The idea, “No More Trash But a Package of Fun,” as Joshua calls it, was inspired by all the waste created by Christmas gift packaging and wrapping. Joshua stated in his entry, “I decided to pick Zero Waste because I wanted toy packages to be a fun part of the toy and will not be instantly disposed to the environment.” The new package he designed “converts the toy package into a fun, integrated, part of the toy, it not only protects the environment by saving packages, but also adds a lot of fun to children.” One of Joshua’s designs was for a toy car package that converts into a racetrack, and the second was a doll package that unfolds into a board game:
As the Grand Prize Winner, Joshua will venture to New York City to turn his packaging idea into a prototype. To create his package design, Joshua will work with SPC members Laura Tufariello, founder of Design and Source Productions, a company that develops, designs, and produces creative eco-friendly packaging, and Steve Mahler of Caraustar Industries Inc., a manufacturer of 100% recycled paperboard and converted paperboard packaging solutions. Congratulations to Joshua on his innovative package design!