MINNEAPOLIS — A special General Mills Inc. promotion in 2018 will allow consumers to transform Big G cereal boxes into Rube Goldberg machines.
The partnership between General Mills and the non-profit Rube Goldberg Inc. (R.G.I.) marks the 30th anniversary of the latter group’s Rube Goldberg Machine Contest.
Specially marked boxes of Cheerios, Cinnamon Toast Crunch, Cocoa Puffs, Cookie Crisp, Lucky Charms and Reese’s Puffs will include simple instructions to transform the packaging into one of six different Rube Goldberg-inspired simple machines. General Mills said the program will bring “fun and STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) education into families’ homes.”
|Hope Zeckmeister, senior marketing communications planner for Big G cereals|
“The desire for creativity and family fun at the breakfast table is intrinsic to General Mills cereals,” said Hope Zeckmeister, senior marketing communications planner for Big G cereals. “It is so important to make STEM approachable to get kids engaged and excited about it early and often. Through this partnership with Rube Goldberg, Inc. we are able to introduce STEM elements to curious inventors by infusing physics principles into our boxes, creating the opportunity for interactive learning.”
Participating families may submit their inventions for an opportunity to win one of 20 $20,000 college scholarships. Winners may use the scholarship for their own education or give the scholarship to a student of their choosing, General Mills said.
The term “Rube Goldberg machine” entered the English vocabulary to refer to a device that achieves by complex means something that seemingly could be done simply. It is named for Reuben (Rube) Goldberg, a prolific syndicated cartoonist known for his creative invention cartoons beginning in the early 20th century. He was awarded a Pulitzer Prize in 1948. He also was an author, sculptor and inventor. He died in 1970.
R.G.I. is a 501(c)3 dedicated to promoting STEM and STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art and math) education. The group says it is “dedicated to keeping laughter and invention alive through the legacy of its namesake.”“Similar to our annual Rube Goldberg Machine Contest this promotion is part of a larger partnership with General Mills that is designed to inspire creativity, teamwork and invention at the breakfast table,” said Jennifer George, the legacy director of R.G.I. and Mr. Goldberg’s granddaughter. “We are thrilled to partner with General Mills to get families thinking about STEM in their own way — and to give builders the chance to win a college scholarship. What’s better than the gift of education?”