Jon, I and the kids went on a weekend mission to Darley Primary School west of Melbourne to do our very first Gaga Pit installation last week. It was like the good ol' days of installations for our other business Castle & Cubby some 9 years ago. The kids were much more helpful this time around than the toddlers they were back then, they even got on the shovels and were helping to move sand, and they were the ultimate Gaga Game testers at the end of the day.
Installing this was really important to Jon and I to make sure we understand our own product, so we know first hand how easily it goes together and to check if we need to adjust our product design. The GREAT news is it was a DREAM! Despite a fall in the land that saw us hiring a dingo digger to hasten the outcome it was pretty easy. We had sand delivered from the local gardening supplies and with a bit of elbow grease and an optimistic attitude we got the whole job done in the day.
We've LOVED hearing the story of Darley Primary School and how the kids raised the money for their Gaga Pit and how they've been using it since! Read their inspiring story below.
Kel & Jono
Interview with Darley Primary School
How did the Gaga Pit come to be for Darley?
The 5 & 6’s have an enterprise unit where they work collaboratively in groups all term. They are tasked with coming up with a good or service that they can create or offer that is a low cost and high margin item. Towards the end of the year they conduct a community stall sale event and sell their goods and wares to other students and their families.
This year was a bonanza where the kids raised $4800! Double the funds of their last event which was held over 2 years ago. The community really rallied around the kids due to the break.
They had agreed they wanted to buy something that was a legacy item gift to the shool from the grade 5 &6's. A few ideas were floated but EVRYONE agreed that a Gaga Pit was the ultimate legacy gift from them to their fellow students.
How did the kids react to receiving the Gaga Pit?
The kids have LOVED the Gaga Pit. At times it has even felt like we needed a roster. Last week we had to close it for 24 hours whilst we painted it and the kids really felt it!
The Gaga Pit has been a huge hit and is putting a lot of smiles on dials at this point of the year.
How have the kids been interacting with the Gaga Pit and with each other in using it?
So far the experiences have been really positive. We have had a few issues with the spectators standing on the edges of the pit to watch but with a few reminders they have hopped down. In terms of interacting with each other, we have a Pit captain who takes a laminated sheet out to ensure that everyone gets a go. This has worked really well and kept the interactions positive.
What outcomes do you hope/expect having a Gaga Pit will have on your students?
For us this was about the students leaving a legacy here at school. They worked hard for the money and now have something to show for and celebrate their hard work.
Any funny stories of what you have witnessed so far?
Please see photo attached of our very popular Chinese teacher, Mr Chan, taking on the kids at break time. We have had many conversations about how this photo epitomises pure joy!
The parents are pleased that the students have had this opportunity and have loved seeing the fun it has brought to the yard. We had some parents volunteer to help with the clear coat last week and they were just so excited to see it all come to fruition.
We love it! We were very strategic and taught the rules during class time prior to opening it up at break times and now it is just such a fun place to be.
Oh you are SO WELCOME Darley! Thank YOU for trusting us to build you something of enduring value before we even had a photo of it!
The BIG Kids at Gaga Games