Create A Toy (CAT)
Our idea, Create A Toy, targets children 5 and under in rural, poverty-stricken, communities across the world. Create A Toy is essentially a kit that provides children with the materials to build their own toy, take it apart, and recreate a new toy. The kit would contain large, plastic, lego-like blocks (to avoid problems with small children choking on the toy) that connect to each other. Aside from blocks, to expand the possibility of creativity, the kit would also include other shapes including circles, cylinders, triangles and other geometric shapes. To connect these pieces to the blocks, plastic connector pieces would also be present.
Create A Toy will foster a child's innate creativity and latent imagination in a way that is neither disruptive to everyday life nor requires much infrastructure in the community to implement. CAT is likely to succeed for the simple reason that children are given to creativity, and simply giving children the materials needed to create, will develop motor skills, pattern recognition, and critical thinking, thus generally improving cognitive ability.
Who will benefit from this idea and where are they located?
Children in impoverished, rural communities without access to many material toys will benefit from CAT. The communities can be located across the world, because the simplicity of the product.
How could you test this idea in a quick and low-cost way right now?
We could first test our idea in the United States to minimize transportation costs and distribution costs. At first, we would likely only produce a few CAT kits and could test the product in a generally low income preschool here in the United States.
What kind of help would you need to make your idea real?
We would need a toy producer to agree to sponsor the idea without much monetary compensation. We would also need distributors in the countries we target to get the toys to the rural communities.
Is this an idea that you or your organization would like to take forward?
This idea is meant to inspire. I hope someone else takes it on!