Taco lovers, do we have an invention for you.
It’s called Taco Tape, and it was one of 70 inventions on display at this year’s Invention Convention held Sunday afternoon at Medaille College. The problem with tacos, according to one inventor: “Every time I eat tacos for dinner, the filling falls out. I have to put it back in and it makes a mess.”
A solution was set forth: “Edible tape to wrap around my taco so the filling stays in.” The taco tape, according to the inventor, is made from mango paste, cayenne pepper and chipotle chili spice.
The Invention Convention, an annual event sponsored by Niagara Frontier Intellectual Property Law Association with help this year from Goodwill Industries, promotes creative thinking and encourages scientific problem solving for students in kindergarten through eighth grade.
“Kids are identifying problems at the level of the age they are at,” explained Merry R. Constantino, executive director of the Western New York Invention Convention. “Students are hungry for creative ways of learning.”
Kindergartner Poppy Marrano of Frederick Law Olmsted School 64 wondered why erasers wear out before their pencils. So she suggested a replaceable eraser that screws into the pencil.
Poppy, like each of the 97 young inventors who represented 13 area schools, was asked to identify a problem in their daily lives, work out a solution and create a prototype.
Consider these inventions:
• Bully-Dozer: The software package to fight bullying from Frederick Law Olmsted fifth-grader Hope Grunert included a book bag, key chain alarm and recorder.
• Power Hat: Complete with one solar panel, the cap was created by Hannah Stern, a seventh-grader at Kadimah School in Amherst. “With the Power Hat,” Hannah said, “you’ll never have to worry about your cellphone going dead.”
• Shoe Caddy: From Nikki Kwiatkowski, 10, and Gabriela Greene, 11, students at Colonial Village Elementary School in the Town of Niagara.
Gabriela explained the problem: “Our lunches in our book bags kept getting smooshed because fifth-graders have a lot of books. We needed more room in our book bag.”
“We decided to put our sneakers outside the bag,” said Nikki.