FINDLAY, Ohio — Lights, Camera, Action! A statewide photography and movie competition for elementary students just wrapped up.
It was a program that taught these students a lot more than they were expecting.
Findlay City Schools participated in the "Cut, Color, Create!" contest as an end-of-the-year activity for elementary students.
Run by the Ohioana Book Festival, students followed the activities in Merrill Rainey's book of the same name and used the cutout characters to make their own stop-motion animated movies.
"To me, the coolest thing about it is four out of five of the winners were girls. So, I'm thinking maybe there might be a fifth-grade girl here that might become the next famous female Hollywood director," fifth-grade teacher Tom Brown said.
Monday night, Rainey helped host an online awards ceremony at the Mazza Museum.
Out of all registrants, the People's Choice Award and the Master Creator Award were both won by students at Bigelow Elementary in Findlay.
"Just be creative in your mind, think outside the box. But, I think inside the box too." one of the Master Creator Award winners Treveyonte Phanthavong said.
The goal of the contest was to help kids learn how to release their creativity, and introduce them to skills that they may have not previously been interested in.
The hope is that these students will continue expressing their creativity in new ways moving forward.
"My hope is that even if they build everything in either the horse or the dinosaur book, that they'll go and create their own things. So, it's really just kind of almost like a story starter for them that really gives them that jumping point to keep going," Rainey said.
While Findlay teachers say they'll continue this as a good end-of-the-year project for years to come, the hope is that this "Cut, Color, Create" competition can become an annual event, and even spread to other states.