Buildies are interlocking blocks made from recycled cardboard that can be used to build sturdy constructions.
Buildies are life-size blocks, mortar and roofing made in the USA from recycled cardboard that enable children and adults to build a variety of forts. Developed by product designer Brian Lilly, who is also a professor in the Technology Entrepreneur Center at the University of Illinois, the system of interlocking blocks can be used to create different sturdy constructions.
Studies show that playing with blocks helps children develop their spatial, mathematical and problem-solving skills. As well as having lots of fun while they’re building, they can learn about engineering, physics and architecture.
The single and full cardboard blocks interlock and mortar pieces stabilize the structure to create forts that can actually last, while the roof pieces which fit onto the blocks can also be used as a ship’s hull, a ramp, a drawbridge, etc. The creations can be disassembled and folded flat for storage in the original box they were shipped in when everyone has finished playing with them.
The cardboard buildings are easy to build and take down so can be used to create different structures over and over again. There is a wide variety of options, limited only by the child or adult’s imagination. Forts, houses, castles, pirate ships, mazes, race tracks and caves are just some of the possible creations. These can then be further customized using colorful crayons, markers or spray paint.
Buildies are currently raising funds on Kickstarter, where a number of kits have been made available. You can pledge $25 for a ramp, $65 for a theater, $150 for a fort, $300 for a fortress, $450 for a castle, or $600 for a Great Wall of China kit. These kits feature different amounts of cardboard blocks, spare plugs, connector strips, roof sections, trusses and cross pieces.
These life-size cardboard materials could be used to teach children and adults about building and architecture and provide the opportunity for lots of fun hands-on learning activities. You can learn more about Buildies and see how they plan to enable people to build better forts in the video below: