Twists, turns, a surprise guest, and a memorable farewell | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, March 01, 2018 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, March 01, 2018

SchoolSmart Minute Challenge Grand Finale

Twists, turns, a surprise guest, and a memorable farewell

SchoolSmart Minute Challenge, a game show for kids, started with a vision to curb children's addiction to gadgets through active participation in intellectual & physical challenges.

In week 13, Cardiff International took on Turkish Hope in the first semi-final round. Round one began with pyramid crashing and Turkish Hope “broke-it-down” in record time for the win. That was it for Turkish Hope as Cardiff dominated the next four challenges and qualified for the finals by bouncing ping-pong balls into a bottle, finding chips inside a bowl of bits, followed by jel peeling off of chewing gums and finally making a cup tower by blowing a balloon.

Onto week 14 and in the second semi-final, we saw South Breeze take on London Grace. South Breeze had a great start by breaking the pyramid in record 17 seconds. Round two went to London Grace who were better at bouncing balls into a cup. Round three went to South Breeze as they were faster at finding chips in a bowl of bits. This semi-final kept swinging back and forth, and so it was in the fourth round as London Grace peeled more jel out of chewing gums for the win. It all boiled down to the fifth round, where they had to build cup tower by blowing a balloon inside a cup to grip it, and then place that cup on top of another. My words cannot do this challenge justice, please check out the episodes on YouTube. The round was hard fought but in the end South Breeze pulled through and became the second team to qualify for the finals.

Final week and it was Cardiff vs. South Breeze. In round one South Breeze won a narrow victory in a mini basketball free throw challenge. Round two was a team game where one participant had to blow and transport a bubble, and pass it through a ring, which Cardiff dominated. To everyone's surprise, Minar stepped in to perform for all mid-show, and Salman even beatboxed alongside him. His performance was a much-needed reprieve, as it allowed to ease the tension among the kids. The third challenge was categorising a bowl of chips, but you could only use one hand for each shape and never put both hands in the bowl at the same time. Cardiff broke this rule giving South Breeze the win. Round four was building a chewing gum bridge. The first attempt ended in a tie, but in the second attempt, Cardiff got it right while South Breeze's captain stumbled. The fifth challenge was a team game where a blindfolded kid had to draw through a maze by following his teammate's instructions. Neither team finished, but South Breeze came the closest and was declared winner of the round, and crowned champion.

This was a really fun show to follow and the people behind it should be congratulated. Thanks to Apex, the title sponsor, and ICY, Pasta Chips and Center Jel for supporting the initiative. Kudos to the participating children and the hosts – Salman Muktadir and Safa Kabir – who did a wonderful job. 

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