Coronation students engender innovation and impressions

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Caine's Arcade 2

Keeping their sticks on the… cardboard? Colby Woody and Shayden Rocque duke it out on a makeshift cardboard table hockey game during Caine’s Arcade Day at the Coronation School on November 20, 2013.

Creative energy was flowing through the Coronation School gym on Wednesday, November 20 as the room was transformed into a cardboard gaming funhouse in homage to the short documentary ‘Caine’s Arcade’.
Cardboard air hockey, pinball and whack-a-mole were just a few of the ingenious manifestations of modern technological gaming fare into cardboard facsimiles for the students to play. Games cost mere nickels and dimes to enjoy and prizes were abundant – from small toys to candy. Students ultimately raised $623.34 which went to the Coronation and District Food Bank.
The idea behind the imaginative assembly came from Coronation teacher Sharalynn Anderson, who’s mind was sparked by watching the documentary about a crafty and creative child in the United States.
“My daughter suggested I watch the story of Caine Monroy, a nine-year-old boy from the States, who created an arcade from cardboard.” says Anderson. “She sent me the link to the ‘Caine’s Arcade’ YouTube video and I began contemplating how we could make such an event work at our school.”
Anderson says the innovative, entrepreneurial spirit embodied by young Monroy was a perfect fit for Coronation School.
“I presented the possibility to staff and because our school has a goal to foster resiliency in students, and is committed to the development of creativity and imagination,” she says, “[so] this notion was a natural fit.”
Anderson says the event began to take shape once a committee of teachers began planning in earnest and students viewing the video were introduced to the concept of making cardboard arcade games.
“November 18 and 19 were set aside for this purpose.” Anderson says. “Students worked in small groups or with adult volunteers to create some very cool projects.”
Anderson says skills acquired through creating the games – from abstract ideas to concrete entities – extends well beyond the fostering of creative thought.
“Students learned their ideas were appreciated; that taking a risk is worthwhile.” she says. “They learned the value of collaboration. They learned the importance of affirming the efforts of others and they realized what it means to ’run’ a business for a day!”
The event was an all-day success, with children and teenagers alike reveling in the creative fun advanced by their peers. Anderson says she is hopeful that the interest piqued by such an endeavour will carry on in their imaginations for years to come.
“Everyone had a great time, students were engaged from start to finish.” she says. “They ask to continue building and we hope the process sparked a desire to let imaginations shine; not just for a day but also for a lifetime!”

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