Middle school students in the Alief ISD summer program enjoyed a futuristic change of pace this past July. They had 10 days to Think Outside the Box and build the best robot design out of cardboard moving boxes and other recycled materials for premium prizes.

Think Outside the Box! BoxBot Contest

Thirty students participated in the contest. Their designs were truly impressive and creative. From tin foil hats to a Transformer and a pink rhinestone robot, these BoxBots were like no others.

The students’ creativity didn’t make it easy for the community judges. The judges included representatives from: International District, Children’s Museum of Houston, Houston Apartment Association, Morgan Group, Wood Residential Services, The Dinerstein Companies, Francis Property Management, Tarantino Properties, Inc. Superb, Greystar, Rockstar Capital Management, LLC, as well as votes from social media.

Alief ISD Competition Finalists

The judges made the difficult decision and were able to boil it down to five finalists, which were announced at an awards ceremony July 13 at Alief Middle School. The finalists were:

  • 1st – Maria Gonzalez (Alief Middle School)
  • 2nd – Jacqueline Quintero (Alief Middle School)
  • 2nd – Chelsea Nicholas (O’Donnell Middle School)
  • 3rd – Jazell Moreira (Alief Middle School)
  • 3rd – Gustavo Gilly (Alief Middle School)

The first-place winner, Maria, received a new iPad, second place winners Jacqueline and Chelsea got Beats by Dre, and the third place winners Jazell and Gustavo received Kindle Fires. All five received free memberships to the Children’s Museum as well.

Contest Sponsor

The local Houston moving company Ameritex Movers sponsored the contest, providing the prizes, boxes, and 150 tickets to the Children’s Museum for Alief ISD.

Beth Rohani, owner of Ameritex Movers, said the students “led the way to being creative and inspired each other to challenge themselves.” She encouraged them to be leaders in their community by reminding them that leaders aren’t defined by what they have, but rather their character and ability to lead by example.

The Ameritex team is no stranger to cardboard crafts. Not only do they make moves with their boxes, but they’ve also been known to create clothes and even a Houston skyline out of cardboard. In fact, their 8-foot-tall box city can be found at the Children’s Museum near the Invention Convention Gallery from now until Sept. 9. Their box city features Houston icons like the George R. Brown Convention Center, Discovery Green, and Houston skyscrapers.

After its tenure at the Children’s Museum, the cityscape will be making a move to Bauer College.

“At Ameritex Movers, we love to be creative and to Think Outside the Box!,” Rohani said. “That’s why the BoxBot Contest is the perfect pairing to our Cardboard City display at the Children’s Museum. It allows us the opportunity to share this amazing experience with Alief and to spark the imagination and creativity of the kiddos in the community.”