The Award Winning Creators of Rory's Story Cubes and Extraordinaires

Can Children Harness the Power of Play and STEAM to Tackle 21st Century Challenges?

The Creativity Hub Launches Innovative Research Study

Empathy, self-esteem and resilience; not the first thing that comes to mind when you look at a toy or game designed for young people, however, The Extraordinaires Design Studio® seeks to promote just that, empowering young people through a playful experience that distills how professional engineers, designers and architects approach real world challenges.

For this innovative research study, The Creativity Hub have partnered with seven future-thinking organizations, schools and clubs located across the United States to study whether learning, human-centered design thinking can develop empathy, creative problem solving skills and self-esteem among elementary age children. Partners include Baltimore Design School, Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Fort Worth and Perrysburg Schools.

Starting in February and continuing for three months, The Extraordinaires Design Studio® will be introduced into lesson-focused and free play periods. Students will play at being designers, following the basic three-step design methodology used in the kit to solve design challenges for their ‘clients’, The Extraordinaires. Transitioning from the game to the real world, students will then apply their newly acquired design thinking skills to the immediate environment and local community, designing solutions to a real meaningful challenge of their choosing.

The Creativity Hub will also be teaming up with Microsoft partner Doyenne360, as they enhance their Azure Cortana Analytics Suite to track the progress and measure the impact of play on 1,000 students attending Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Fort Worth. They will measure the progress of both students and educators along this journey of discovery.

"Through this partnership, our hope is that kids from all backgrounds will have the opportunity to have fun, while they discover problem solving in a new way. The Extraordinaires Design Studio is perfect for this, combining experimental learning and creative thinking together in a fun, easy to use activity.” - Daphne Barlow, CEO, Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Fort Worth.

“With over 1300 children taking part in this program, we are equally excited and nervous about this initiative. If we achieve the results we anticipate, these children will come away more confident and better equipped to tackle the increasingly complex challenges our world seems to be throwing at us daily.” Anita Murphy, Co-Founder, The Creativity Hub & Inventor of The Extraordinaires® Design Studio.

About The Creativity Hub
The Creativity Hub publishes games and playthings that foster imagination, empathy and self-esteem. Today over 5 million sets of Rory’s Story Cubes have been sold worldwide. Anita Murphy and Rory O’Connor, co-founders, envision a world where these attributes are valued and fostered in every individual. The couple developed The Extraordinaires® Design Studio to introduce the world of design in a playful way, offering design challenges for extraordinary clients with exaggerated needs. It launched in September 2013 to critical acclaim from STEM/STEAM educators. http://www.creativityhub.com

About Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Fort Worth
Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Fort Worth serves more than 11,000 youth ages 6-24 years old through seven branch locations and outreach programs in the schools and community. Its mission is to provide enriching programs for youth from disadvantaged circumstances to develop the qualities needed to become responsible citizens. With access to programs that focus on Academics, Health and Citizenship, they are changing the odds, year after year. http://www.fortworthkids.org.

About Baltimore Design School
Baltimore Design School is a public middle-high school that focuses on design. Students learn the basics of Fashion Design, Architecture, and Graphic Design. The school believes that all students, with good instruction and practice, can learn art and design skills and achieve high standards in their academic programs. It believes that its graduates will be leading designers and architects of the future who see design as a way of thinking, problem-solving, and living a productive and rewarding life. http://baltimoredesignschool.com

About Perrysburg Schools
Perrysburg schools is one of the leading, cutting edge school systems in the United States, serving K-12 students in Northwest Ohio. Research-based and innovative practices help move the mission forward: Ensuring students achieve their greatest potential. The past 4 years, Perrysburg has launched a STEM program across the K-12 curriculum so that all students can explore, create, design, and become the problem solvers of tomorrow.

http://www.perrysburgschools.net/