DALLAS - For most people, an empty card box is considered junk. Often, it ends up in the recycling dumpster. But for a group of Fort Worth students, cardboard is golden.

It's all hands-on-deck at Fort Worth's Stripling Middle School.

The box cutter, when you cut it... you try to follow that line. So you got to hold it hard, saidsixth grader Khiry McClanahan.

You might say these students are on the cutting edge when it comes to after-school programs.

They're building a homemade boat out of cardboard.They design, build and paint the boat themselves. They'll put their skills to thetest next month, as they try to navigate their cardboard creation down a lazy river in the annual boat regatta at Hurricane Harbor.

Probably be kind of scary because it might sink a little and if one of us pokes a hole through it, we will all sink, said Melissa Bernardino, asixth grade student.

The boat, which started off withfive big sheets of cardboard, will hold up to 900 pounds.The students can only useglue, caulk, paper tape and polyurethane - no screws, nails, staples or Styrofoam.

Instructor Dave Maxon, a sixthgrade English teacher, oversees the project. He says its more than just teaching boat building - it's also educational. They don't realize they're doing math when they're doing this. They don't even think about that, but so much of it is relevant to what they're doing in class and in the future, he said.

The Hurricane Harbor Regatta is set to sail on May 1st.

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