Can Do Canstruction


Kim Czerniewski

Such canned food products of all sizes and colors will be used in the sculptures that the students will design and create.

Kim Czerniewski, Writer

What type of sculpture could be made out of nothing but food cans?  That’s the question that the Art, Engineering, and Math departments of Bob Jones are collaborating to answer.

Canstruction is a nonprofit charity organization that takes a unique spin on donating food to combat hunger.  The organization holds an annual competition to see which school can build the best and most impressive sculpture out of cans of food.  Once all the sculptures are completed and the winners are announced, all the sculptures are disassembled and the food used for their construction is donated to food banks to help those in need.  In 2010, 2 million pounds of food were collected to supply 1.5 million meals at food banks.

Mrs. Lakso’s third block Advanced Art students, Mr. Raper’s third block Engineering students, and Coach Bourque’s third block Geometry students will work together to design and build creations of impressive proportions out of only cans.  To make the project even more difficult, their creation is limited to a six foot by six foot work-space.  It is a challenge that takes the design ability of art students, the logical formulas for materials of geometry students, and the ingenuity of engineering students.

The three classes are put together in groups with individuals from each class to create different designs.  Once sculptures are successfully designed and the materials for their construction are acquired, they will be put up around Bob Jones for judgment.  The team that creates the sculpture that wins at the school level will recreate the sculpture at the Space and Rocket Center to be put on display on a larger scale.

Such plans for the project range from concepts of the Titanic to ironic depictions of a can opener made of cans.  “It’s great because it brings together math, engineering, and art minds, so [the students can] come up with an aesthetically pleasing, and structurally sound sculpture out of cans,” enthuses Mrs. Norton.  “Its great to make the kids work together from different backgrounds, because that’s what you do in real life,” she continues to explain, presenting the real-world benefit of the project for the students who participate.

Hannah Forrest, a senior at Bob Jones, loves the initiative that the students participating in Canstruction are taking.  “It is an ingenious thing to do.  It’s wonderful to get people together who have skills in different departments,” she said.

Canstruction is an opportunity for seemingly unrelated sources to work together toward a common, charitable cause.  The three departments have been meeting periodically over the past week, and the separate teams will present their designs on Thursday before the building process begins.