The iconic Slinky is headed to classrooms across the country as an official sponsor of the 2019-20 Rube Goldberg Machine Contest.

Thousands of kids will use Slinky in designing their Rube Goldberg Machines (RGM) when the contest begins next month. In keeping with the tradition of a classic RGM, the ultimate goal is to create a complex path to accomplishing a “simple” task, which for this year’s contest is to “turn off a light.”

Alex Brands‘ Slinky will be used as a transfer-of-energy step somewhere within each student’s machine. As a National Task Sponsor, the Slinky team will be part of the judging algorithm for this year’s competition, and an award will be given to the team that creatively achieves the “Best Use of Slinky.”

“Slinky celebrates a tradition of timeless entertainment and is an unassuming product that can be used in ingenious ways. And, everyone knows it’s Slinky!,” says Laurie Conway, vice president of marketing at Alex Brands. “Aligning with an organization with a similar focus and roots in engineering seemed like the perfect way to kick off Slinky’s 75th anniversary in 2020.”

The forthcoming contest places teams in three competitive divisions: Apprentice (ages 8-11), Division I (ages 11-14), and Division II (ages 14-18). Winners will be announced next April.