I have written about how exciting this time of year is for sixth grade, as they undertake to design, build, educate and publicize their structure for the Canstruction Jr. competition at the end of January.
Canstruction is a huge undertaking. Like all huge undertakings, getting a vision of the scope of your work is important, right from the start. Good project managers juggle logistics and details while always keeping the end in mind.
At first, to a sixth grader, the “end” might seem to be having a completely built structure at the Galleria mall on January 30. Really, though, the end is the collector of all that good food, in all those hundreds of cans.
That’s why the lead teachers for Canstruction, Emma and Shirley, took the sixth graders to the Food Bank of the Hudson Valley at the start of the Canstruction design project. The Hudson Valley Food Bank is the cooperating organization that takes in and distributes the canned goods. Hundreds of cans cannot be loaded into grocery sacks and delivered in family cars. The food bank works with pallets and fork lifts to get the cans at the end of the build, after the students “decanstruct.”
The scope and scale of the warehouse is immense. Standing in the space drives home the need for food, certainly. It also sends a powerful message of hope: All these goods arrive at the food bank from caring people who have donated. Our students enter into this endeavor knowing that they will join the ranks of caring people through their Canstruction project.