It’s a quirky and fun annual tradition for us…the Long-View Cardboard Regatta. This tradition started as a Build Week but moved to a community activity that is jointly run by the kids and staff of Long-View. The challenge? Design and build a human-powered boat that can carry one crew member (“the captain”) to the middle of Lake Austin and back, navigating the regatta course along the way. The boat may only be made of cardboard and duct tape.
Seventeen teams went through the registration process this year, submitting paperwork and blueprints, and readying themselves for the regatta. With boat names like "Zombies Can’t Swim,” “Shoo-Shoo,” “The Ugly Duckling,” “The Sloth,” and “USS Sinker,” we knew it was going to be a fun event! As always the coveted trophy (made out of cardboard, of course!) was the prize. See the event captured in this photo album.
Build Week 9 began with an unusual sight: two yellow school buses parked outside of Long-View. The kids arrived bundled up for the sub-freezing weather and brimming with guesses about where the buses were headed. But the tight-lipped teachers weren’t about to let the cat out of the bag. Instead they ushered the kids inside to find the lanyards designating their team names.
Moxie, Peepers, Pogo, Karma, Curly, Chico...
The team names were about as uninformative as the teachers! Only when the kids disembarked the buses at the Austin Nature and Science Center did the meaning of the team names become clear. ANSC offers nature-related programs and services for Austinites, human and animal alike! One component of their work is to rescue injured, disabled, and imprinted animals who are unable to survive in the wild. As we visited these critters’ enclosures, each team discovered the meaning of their team name….
Problem solving is an integral part of the learning experience at Long-View, and Indigo Band learners are working on the unique, not to mention complex, endeavor of constructing a prosthetic hand that can handle (pun intended) the task of grasping and lifting a cup of sand with a weight of at least 200 grams. “One of the biggest challenges is that we have to design it using materials either from the Maker Space or from home,” says Esme. “Marin’s prototype is really impressive,” she adds. “She’s even thinking about connecting a motor to it!”