SD73 students test the seaworthiness of cardboard at TCC

Elementary school students from across Kamloops raced cardboard contraptions at the TCC

Elementary school students spent over three hours building their cardboard and duct tape vessels in the TCC last Friday as part of the second annual Cardboard Boat Races. (Justin Moore/The Omega)

“Whatever floats your boat,” took on a whole new meaning for students of David Thompson and Logan Lake Elementary school last Friday.

Using cardboard and duct tape supplied by the TRU Trades and Technology program, students from both schools spent three hours of the morning constructing boats big enough to hold a single group member and buoyant enough to race across the TCC pool.

“They were pretty excited and nervous and not sure how it was going to end but overall they were pretty stoked to be here,” said Chris Martin, a teacher at David Thompson.

These trials come after months of planning, designing, prototype building and revising as part of the new applied design science and technology program that’s being offered in elementary and secondary schools.

The first of three heats took off just before 1:00 p.m., the students eagerly casting their creations off into the Tournament Capital Centre pool overlooked by parents, teachers and surrounding TCC patrons.

The objective of the race was simple, get to the other side of the pool before the other two teams in each round, but as the kids quickly found out, cardboard doesn’t easily stay intact in water.

While many made it to the other side of the pool in relatively one piece, others capsized halfway through the race but not without cheers and smiles from everyone involved. After three rounds, the kids were excited to compare their strategies with one another, pose for pictures or carry what was left of their vessels.

Even though the whole spectacle lasted just under an hour, the excitement was endless and for David Thompson Elementary, “It’s happening again for us for sure,” said Martin.

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