top of page

19th Annual Young Inventor Challenge®
NOVEMBER 9, 2024


  • October 27, 2024 - Registrations & Virtual Submissions Due (REQUIRED)

  • November 9, 2024 - In-Person Presentations & Awards (OPTIONAL)

$25 registration fee per participant. 



Registration for the YIC opens later this summer! Sign up for alerts so you can be notified when registration opens. 

The mission of the Young Inventor Challenge® (YIC) is to inspire the next generation to use creativity, critical thinking, and STEAM skills in the invention and innovation process and to connect professionals within the toy and game industry to mentor these young innovators in their design process.

The annual Young Inventor Challenge® provides an opportunity for children ages 6 to 18 to develop and pitch their original inventions to major toy and game companies, industry professionals, members of the media and general public. This unique and educational experience ignites imagination, creativity and presentation skills like no other, providing a means of taking these inventions to greater heights, with professional critiques from People of Play industry experts.


Many of the winning inventions have been licensed by these global companies and can be found on store shelves today!

“Aside from being fun, engaging, and meaningful, the Young Inventor Challenge builds and reinforces sophisticated practices such as critical and creative thinking, problem-solving, and leadership,” she said. “These essential skills are needed to be successful in the 21st century.” -Carrie Martinez, Teacher, Palos Heights, IL

General Questions? Contact -

Interested in being a YIC judge? Sign up now!

POP logo w Young Inventor Challenge.png
YIC Website Contribution Banner (2).png


The annual Young Inventor Challenge® convenes each November. It's never too early to start creating! Use the resources below to help inspire ideas and start inventing the next popular toy or game. 

2023 Fall Young Inventor Challenge® 

2023 YIC Int'l Championship.jpg


YIC Sponsor Logos.png

Support the Young Inventor Challenge® and join our sponsors! Learn more. 

Young Inventor Challenge® is Accredited! 

Stem Org Accredited.jpg

Meet our Impressive & Committed
Young Inventor Challenge® Advisory Board! 

Tim Walsh - Chairman of Young Inventor Challenge® Advisory Board, Co-Founder Roo Games, designer, YouTuber at SeizethePlay

Alicia Alexander - Educator, Former YIC Director

Helaina Cappel - Owner at Kids Table Board Gaming, former teacher, board game designer

Mary Couzin - Founder & President of Chicago Toy & Game Group, Inc. dba People of Play - POP!

Michael Gramelspacher - Toy Inventor and Co-Director / Founder at SG Labs, Co-Organizer for St. Clare School Innovator Club (SCIC)

Ahren Hoffman - Director of the Young Inventor Challenge® 

Ken Johnson - Phase 10 inventor and trustee of the Oakland County Schools Game & Invention Challenge in Michigan

Julie McNamara - ALPS Teacher, Palos East School, Palos Heights, IL

Allison Miller - Founder and President of Happy Camper Live

Gene Murtha - ASTRA Board Member, POP Executive Committee, Regional Director of SCORE

Erik Quam - VP of New Product and Business Development, Smart Toys and Games

bottom of page