In queso you missed it ...
It’s almost that simple, but there’s a lot more to junior Chuck Norton’s Venture Accelerator project—Taco 'Bout It—that launched and completed a Kickstarter campaign this week. He is the first SCH student to do so!
Taco 'Bout It is a mental health card game that encourages players to discuss sensitive subjects, break down tensions between parents and kids, and enable sometimes difficult conversations—all within the context of a clever and family-friendly game.
If you ask Norton why it’s modeled after tacos, he will tell you quite simply: ”I’m not too sure myself, but who doesn’t love tacos? Now lettuce play!”
In each set of Taco ‘Bout It card decks, there's a total of 164 colorful cards divided into three categories: shell, protein, and topping. The goal of the game is to build a taco with these cards, each of which has been designed to inspire conversations using personal reactions and feelings to specific situations. For example, a shell card prompt might read: “You got a bad grade on an important test.” Players would then need to respond to the questions, “How do you feel? How do you react?”
As part of the development process, the game was tested by many different groups of people, including three families, groups of high school students, and various mental health experts. Set up by his Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership teachers and mentors, Norton had months of calls and feedback from Minding Your Mind—an organization whose primary objective is to provide mental health education to adolescents, teens, and young adults, as well as parents, teachers, and school administrators. Minding Your Mind helped ensure that the game recognizes all perspectives and that each player will have as positive an experience as possible. Norton gives a big shout out to them saying, “The game truly wouldn't be the same without their support!”
Norton also acknowledges the key contributions of two members of the SCH faculty: CEL Entrepreneur in Residence Paris Gramann and Upper School Psychologist Leslee Frye. “I am really grateful to Paris Gramann, who was my teacher for the Social Impact Studio for Capstone last year and has continued to advise me as part of the Venture Accelerator course. One of the best parts of CEL is the great feedback I get from teachers and fellow students."
Leslee Frye has been an advisor to Norton since Taco ‘Bout It was first created. Ms. Frye has provided innumerable resources and information to ensure that the focus stays true to mental health and says, “It's fun, thoughtful, creative, and best of all it normalizes the stigma of mental health. It helps everyone learn how to communicate and the interaction it brings out is amazing. Through seemingly simple and nonthreatening questions, you begin to learn more and more about whomever you play the game with.”
Norton continues to perfect his card game, which won the Social Impact Award at the 2020 Winter Capstone Showcase when it was first introduced. Norton’s Kickstarter campaign raised $2,183 in three days. He plans to use the funds to develop and purchase a professional, and ultimately sellable, version of the game from ShuffledInk, a leader in custom-printed playing cards.
On the eve of his Kickstarter’s launch, Norton said, "I am excited to hopefully see my project go from a prototype on index cards to a professionally printed card game that will be played on families' kitchen tables soon!"
Learn more about SCH Academy's Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership program, and see how our students are changing the world. Hear directly from Director of the CEL Ed Glassman about our trademarked curriculum and read about our CEL course offerings.