Forts, Family, Fun

Our Idea

Who are we?

My name is Andrew Hunter. I’m the oldest in a family of 7. I am an electrical engineer with experience running workshops to teach kids how to make their own video games. I was home schooled for part of elementary, and I have a passion for hands-on learning. I want kids to be interested in science and technology, and I understand that teaching young minds is extremely valuable.

This is why I have been working to develop Fortitude. This would allow elementary teachers and homeschooling parents to teach volume, surface area and trigonometry in a fun, hands on way that kids will remember.

What are we offering?

Fortitude is a product that allows you to shape massive forts indoors or outdoors using large cardboard templates. It has modular connector pieces in 90, 45 and 30 degree angles, allowing a wide variety of shapes to be made. Each sheet of cardboard can be attached to these pieces easily with minimal force. Specialized lesson plans for teachers will help students to learn about volume, surface area and basic trigonometry. 20% of all proceeds go to the habitat for humanity to help end homelessness and improve quality of life in Calgary communities

Who are we offering it to?

Fortitude will be marketed towards teachers and homeschooling parents. It is sold as part of a kit that includes easy to use lesson plans. Parents with young children are also targeted.

Why does that person care?

Enriches education for kids and we hope it will be just as memorable as those plastic counting cubes that come in 1’s 10’s and 100’s.

Cheap to replace the cardboard part if it gets wrecked

Easy to use for all ages

Reusable connectors ensure continued sustainability

Social venture allows community involvement and is a decisive factor for people wanting to make a difference for homelessness in Calgary.

Our distinctive competencies

Engineering background allows technical design of connectors

Experience teaching kids helps with designing lesson plans that are relevant and easy to understand

Was home schooled personally and have insight into what teachers want.

Grassroots individual focused on enriching learning for kids.

The substitutes & alternatives

There are many cardboard forts available, but many of these are cookie cutter designs that can only be built one way, and set up solely for playing in.

Other cardboard constructions generally are built by adults and are not designed for kids to build themselves. Because they are not modular they require more involved setup.

Building a fort yourself with scrap cardboard, tape and box cutters is not easy nor safe for children to do. Our specialized connector pieces will ensure that it is safe and simple.

Other products have no focus on teaching or any community involvement.


Our Pitch

Our concept pitch

Our personal pitch


The Value

Our first key person

Rose Hunter

Former teacher in the public school board

Home schools some of her children

Cares because she wants fun toys for her kids to play with and set up around the house

Our promise to them is to make our product easy to assemble and cheap to replace when damaged.

Our second key person

Shannon Lemermeier

Teacher in the public school board

Teaches special needs students and English second language.

Cares because it is very difficult to teach math skills to students that do not understand written math problems very well.

Our promise to them is to create full lesson plans that outline exactly what to do so that she can focus her attention on helping students individually instead of making lesson plans.

Our third key person

Edie Reichardt

Principal at Mount View School K-6

In charge of raising funding, increasing student and parent engagement, improving curriculum.

Cares because she would be the one in charge of securing the budget for buying these kits for teachers to use.

Our promise to them is to make the products affordable, reusable and specifically tailored to how they want to teach in their school.


Your feedback and ideas

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  1. Customer (C)


    Value proposition (VP)


    Substitutes & alternatives (SA)


    People (P) on the team


    Offering (O)


    Distinctive competencies (DC)


    I think the idea is quite solid. I can clearly see the use case, and it’s really cool that it can be used as a learning and teaching exercise at the same time. I think the value proposition needs to be fleshed out better, as there is no explanation of why the key people care about this idea, or what kind of value that they receive from the offering. Additionally, I would explore the substitutes and alternatives further to see how this innovation compares to other offerings on the market.

  2. Customer (C)


    Value proposition (VP)


    Substitutes & alternatives (SA)


    People (P) on the team


    Offering (O)


    Distinctive competencies (DC)


    Engaging children in numeracy through play is a worthy goal, and on I feel could be articulated better in the language of the value proposition. The actual offering is strong, and the dual emphasis on play and education makes this product stand out in comparison to substitutes. Adding a workshop/open source component to this idea may expand the customer base and increase the value proposition. The philanthropic idea is to support communities through fundraising, and building a community around the product could make it more distinctive.