Two Black elementary students took home the first-place trophy at a national convention for their innovative approach to cleaning their hands.
Chicago, Illinois, second-graders Kailey McGuire and Jaiah Gosa teamed up to solve a problem Kailey noticed after playing in the sand — how to wash your hands without a bathroom. The Lenart Regional Gifted Center students soon created a blueprint and prototype for a portable sink that won first place at the school’s invention convention back in June, ABC 7 Chicago reports.
“I had just finished playing in the sand but there was nowhere to wash my hands nearby,” 8-year-old Kailey told ABC 7 Chicago. “Then I thought, what if I had a sink I could carry with me to wash my hands and eat the snacks?”
After winning the school convention, the two students took their new invention to the regional level. Next up, the pair traveled to a Detroit, Michigan, suburb to compete in the national Invention Convention.
“I had to prep her like, ‘It’s OK if you don’t win,’” her mom told ABC 7 Chicago. “And they called her name for first place and I was like, 'Ah!'”
Jaiah and Kailey won first place in the national competition.
The pair has made headline news as they continue the path of other Black Illinois inventors like Percy Julian, the inventor of fire extinguishing foam, and Henrietta Bradberry, an underwater torpedo inventor.
Kailey was featured on ABC’s Strahan, Sara & Keke during the Kidventors segment that highlights the creations of young inventors.
During her entrance, Kailey made sure to show her fans love by giving high-fives to the entire front row.
“As you see every item is velcroed to the back and you can take them out,” Kailey explained as she prepared to demonstrate her prized invention on Michael Strahan, one of the co-hosts of the ABC show.
Dressed in a stylish metallic jacket and pink glitter skirt, Kailey reminded Strahan to wash between his fingers while continuing the presentation.
Kailey then detailed the events of the day her mother brought her to the beach and she couldn’t enjoy her favorite barbeque chips because there was no sink nearby to wash her hands. It was this stifling of snack time that would lead to the development of the “Kid's Fun Portable Sink.”
Co-host Sara Haines then introduced McGuire’s parents and asked if Kailey had always been innovative.
“She’s always been like this, high energy, very creative and just a very open-minded child as a youth,” her father said.
“She also had a big imagination,” her mother, Karin McGuire explained. “I was a teacher and she would come to my job and take over the classrooms at 3 or 4 years old.”
Kailey said she isn't done with her inventions. She revealed she plans to explore robotics for the next competition — and we plan to stan.