Report: Global Cardboard Challenge Malaysia

In conjunction with Imagination Foundation’s Global Cardboard Challenge, Cool Mum Super Dad Academy decided to host the GLOBAL CARDBOARD CHALLENGE ~ IT’S COOL! IT’S FREE! in Malaysia.

There were a total of 28 entries, 100+ attendees and top 3 awesome prizes were given away. Judging was done based on voting by all the kids and adults. All entries were really amazing and creative! Some of them were simply marvelous and you could see tremendous effort put in.

Instead of breathing the internet, today the kids got to breathe outside oxygen, turning it into a fun, fulfilling and fantastic afternoon.

Check out the full photo album at


The most important reason for this event is that, it gives a platform for kids to use their imagination to express creativity and innovation.

From a business standpoint:

Where Malaysia stands in the world in terms of innovation and creativity – According to the Global Innovation Index (, Switzerland is ranked first, and Sweden second.  Malaysia is ranked 32nd. As a country,Malaysia has a lot to catch up if we wish to be competitive in the global arena. Times have changed. Countries that nurture creativity and innovation in its people will definitely fare better, become richer, more successful. This is a mindset that must be taught from young.

Why innovation and creativity are so important:

Countries like Sweden and Switzerland are in the forefront because of their strong culture in innovation. Ericsson and IKEA are two examples of  Swedish companies that started and thrived on innovation. Here’s the story on IKEA quoted from:

“The IKEA story begins in 1931, when five-year-old Ingvar Kamprad starts selling matches to his neighbors—with a profit. Just twelve years later, he founded a company that he decided to call IKEA, based on his own initials plus the first letters of Elmtaryd and Agunnaryd, the farm and village where he grew up. Six decades later, the company had developed from an entrepreneurial idea in the woods of southern Swedento a major furniture retail brand present in 40 countries around the world.”

Why cardboard of all things?

Reasons why cardboard is a great choice for parents to nurture creativity and imagination in children:

Versatility – you can use cardboard with almost anything and everything to produce awesome objects. There’s no limit to it. Cardboard has excellent and endless potential for kids to come up with ideas that require imagination. Cardboard induces the flow of creative juices in children. “Kids are naturally wired to play and imagine. But when we give them tons of toys that do everything, they don’t need to imagine anything. So give your kids a cardboard challenge – to find the hidden objects in the boxes like Michelangelo did with blocks of granite.” – (Melissa Taylor, Toys that require imagination.)

With cardboard, kids can produce musical instruments (violin, guitar, piano, drum); vehicles (flying carpet, car, truck, fire-engine, airplanes), electrical items (television, radio), business items (ticket booth), household stuff (house, cabin, chair, bags, table) and of course, robots (boys’ favourite). Google “images for cardboard creativity” and you’ll get more than 3 million results in 0.47 seconds.

Universality – Cardboard is super cheap and easily available. The fact that more than 150 cities worldwide have signed up for this event is testimony for the universality of cardboard and how kids love to play with.

Resourcefulness – you have to combine a seemingly useless material i.e. cardboard with other items to produce something meaningful.

Social entrepreneurship: As shown in the video for Caine’s Arcade, with the cardboard items he created, Caine set up a business with other children as his customers. We see here an effort to reuse and recycle stuff and running a profitable business.

Other benefits: Of course, we have other spin-offs like connecting with the family.


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Ahmad has written 13 articles.

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