Carnival Games Challenge Part 2

Design an interactive game!

Session ROLES:

🐙 = Site Coordinator

🦉= Mentor


Notes for Site Coordinators and Mentors:

  • This is part 2 of the Carnival Games Challenge.

  • This challenge is structured in three parts. The first two sessions focus on creating and remixing unique carnival games with littleBits. In the third session, you will host a Carnival Showcase where girls, mentors, and parents will take turns playing each other’s games. 

  • Please invite parents and caregivers to come partake in the final Carnival Showcase session next time!

  • This session guide provides a detailed outline for part 2 of the Carnival Games Challenge, but feel free to improvise or put your own spin to things. If you have an idea for a challenge or prompt that will get girls excited, go for it! If something is not working well, change course and experiment another path forward.  If you do change things up, we would love to hear what has been successful for you!  

Get Social!

📷 We love to see invention in action! Take photos/videos of your session and tag us on social with the hashtag #snapthegap. *Please make sure you have sharing authorization from parents and your affiliated organization before posting.


Session Overview

The Carnival Games Challenge is structured in three parts. This session is Part 2 of the Carnival Games Challenge.

The best carnival games often use electronics to make things louder, brighter, and more exciting. In this challenge, girls will use Bits and other materials to remake their favorite carnival game, or imagine a brand new game. 

  1. First they will brainstorm ideas for their game and explore how Bits can be used with different materials. 

  2. Then they will build and test multiple prototypes of their favorite idea. 

  3. At the close of the challenge, they will invite others to play their games and explain the rules and experience what it takes to win.


Session Details




2 hours





Bits + Accessories:

Snap the Gap STEM Kit


Mentors will need to bring a connected device (phone, tablet, or computer) to access instructional videos

Recycled Materials:

Ex: cardboard, cereal boxes, plastic bottles, etc. You can work with girls and mentors to collectively bring these supplies in as needed.



Other Materials:

Extra 9V batteries


Colored Paper


Pen/Pencil & Paper



Theme: Interaction Design

Objectives: By the end of the Carnival Games Challenge, girls will be able to:

  • Use actual carnival games as inspiration for the games that they’d like to reinvent.

  • Create a functioning circuit(s) that brings their game to life (can be motion, lights, sound or a combination of).

  • Design a carnival game, that is real or imagined.

  • Give and receive constructive verbal feedback while testing their inventions.

  • Write an instruction set for creating their game and how players can win.

  • Share their game with others and explain the rules of the game.


Set Up


  • Make sure all the supplies for this session are prepped and ready to go. Discuss with mentors if you need help gathering recycled materials.

  • This is part 2 of the Carnival Games Challenge. Girls should have sketches of their ideas and the beginnings of a prototype from the previous session.

  • If girls are participating in groups, be sure that they keep track of the Bits and accessories they use so everyone has a full set at the end of the challenge.


  • Make sure to bring a charged connected device (phone, iPad, or computer) to access instructional videos during the session.

  • If you discussed adding additional materials with your mentee in the previous session, please make sure to bring them for this session.


Meet Up

5 min


  • Take attendance and make sure mentors and girls are paired off.


  • Discuss with your mentee:

    • How was your week?

    • Discuss with girls whether they had any new ideas for their Carnival Game since last session

    • Take a look at any additional materials you each brought for the session



5 min


Today we will pick up where we left off last time. We will start with the prototype you made during the previous session.

Goals for Carnival Games Challenge Part 2: 

  • Finish first prototype (if you haven’t already done so)

  • Test your prototype and get feedback from others

  • Iterate and update your prototype

  • Create a poster or flyer that explains the rules for your game and what it takes to win

Before jumping into the challenge, provide a quick review of the Invention Cycle framework. Today you will be going through the PLAY, REMIX, and SHARE phases.



15 min


Facilitate the PLAY & REMIX activities with mentees.


During the PLAY & REMIX activities, float around the room and observe/help out where needed. You will also monitor the time and announce when the group should come together near the end.

*If girls have yet to create an initial prototype, refer to the previous session to get started.

Test out your prototype

Screenshot 2019-08-05 at 1.16.55 PM.png
  • Once the prototypes have been constructed, girls should test their inventions to make sure they work and to see what they can learn about them. Keep in mind that the inventions likely won’t work perfectly the first time; failure is part of the process. 

  • If time, allow girls to test each other’s models and provide feedback:

    • Put groups in pairs. Group 1 will have 3 minutes to share their invention and Group 2 will have 2 minutes to give feedback, then switch. When it’s their turn, each group should state their goal, demo the invention, then allow the other group to try it. Try using the Glow, Grow, Question, Suggestion frameworks to record and share feedback:

      • Glow: One thing you liked

      • Grow: One area for improvement

      • Question: A question about the invention

      • Suggestion: An idea for the group to use

    • Take notes about what works and what doesn’t, so you can make changes in the next version.



60 min

Improve or Modify your Prototype

This is the opportunity to experiment with fixes and improvements.


Continue Play Testing

Getting feedback during the iteration process will help girls make even better versions of their prototype. Test the invention after a few improvements have been made. Have girls ask others what their favorite features are and what suggestions they have to make it better.

Continue the Remix phase (and remind girls to play with their updated inventions) until the prototype has been modified into a state that the team is happy with, or until the allotted time runs out.

Once games are ready for presentation, have girls fine tune the rules of their game to match the functionality of their inventions.


Prep For Showcase

20 Min


Give girls a preview of the next session:

  • In the next session, we will celebrate by hosting a carnival to showcase the games the you created. To prepare, you will need to make a poster explaining how your game works so others can play.

Prep: Have each group create an informational card/poster

  • Information should include:

    • Name of the game

    • Bits & materials used

    • The goal of the game

    • Any rules the player should know about

Screenshot 2019-08-05 at 1.27.33 PM.png


5 Min


Reflect with your mentee:

  • What is one new thing that you learned during this challenge?

  • Favorite part about the Carnival Games challenge?



10 Min

Wrap Up


  • Make sure girls power off the Power Bit and disconnect the battery.

  • Place all Bits & Accessories that you are not using back in the box.

  • Make sure to store the poster with your mentee’s carnival so it will be ready for next session.


  • Find a safe place to store girls’ prototypes and posters until the next session.

  • Store kits away for next time.

  • Announce plan for next session:

    • Next session is the final Snap the Gap session. It will be a celebration!

    • We will host a carnival and invite others to come play your interactive games. 


Log Your Session

Tell Us How It Went

Your feedback is essential to help us improve the program!



After the session, please fill out the Session Feedback Form

Get Social! 

📷 We love to see invention in action! Take photos/videos of your session and tag us on social with the hashtag #snapthegap. *Please make sure you have sharing authorization from parents and your affiliated organization before posting.