Pre-K through 2nd Grade

Early Learning
Challenge Experience

Let your favorite youngsters try a creative experience as unique as they are!

Early learners from preschool through second grade can also participate in a non-competitive approach to our Challenge Experience. Our Early Learning Challenge is an opportunity for them to be creative, learn simple building and construction, become comfortable working in teams, and learn how to speak in front of an audience. This Challenge lets kids play and experiment with their solutions without the pressure of competition.


The Early Learning Challenges

Destination Imagination Challenges are the prompts or guidelines for what a team creates. Our Challenges are open-ended, allowing teams to express themselves creatively and take full ownership of their solutions. Challenges are designed to teach the creative process—a system of learning that is at the root of innovation and a child’s ability to bring an idea to life.

Early Learning teams get to participate in both a Team Challenge and an Instant Challenge, right alongside the “big kids” helping them develop confidence and creativity at an early age.

early learning

Each Challenge season, we produce one Early Learning Team Challenge designed for preschool through 2nd grade. Early Learning teams will work over several weeks or months on a solution or presentation, which they will present at a DI tournament for feedback, kudos and standing ovations! These teams will not be ranked or scored in any way.


early learning

Just like the competitive teams, Early Learning teams will have the opportunity to solve a quick-thinking and quick-creating Instant Challenge on the same day that they present their solution. They will not know what this Challenge will be until they show up. They will receive positive feedback and be able to reflect on their experience — no scores will be given.

where it works

DI’s Early Learning Challenge Experience can work in many different educational environments, as well as at home with friends or classmates. If there are students gathering on a regular basis, then an Early Learning team is possible. Here are just some examples of where our Early Learning Challenge Experience can work.

  • Afterschool or out-of-school time (OST) programs
  • In-school enrichment time
  • Homeschool co-ops
  • Preschools
  • Montessori classrooms (Pre-K to 2nd grade)
  • Library and museum youth programs
  • Families, friends, and community groups

The Team

A team is a group of usually between 2 and 10 members preschool through 2nd grade that work together to develop a solution to one of our Team Challenges. While there is no limit to the number of team members on an Early Learners team, smaller teams of 5-10 team members will be much more manageable for the Adult Leader.

The Team Manager

The Team Manager is an adult (often a parent or teacher) who teaches the creative process and helps keep the team on track, but does not assist or interfere with the team’s solution. Team Managers get access to valuable resources to help them along the way—a Team Manager Roadmap as well as a catalogue of online learning modules they can access at their own pace. Each DI Affiliate may also offer in-person or virtual training for Team Managers in a particular geography.
Read more about US Team Manager background check requirements »

Team Support & Parents

Parents and other family members can stay involved with teams by supporting their Team Managers. Teaching team members new skills, helping to find supplies, or even providing a snack are a few of the ways parents can help out. They can also volunteer to help out at local tournaments.


The organizations around the world that administer the Challenge Experience in each state, province or country are known as Affiliates. The DI Challenge Experience operates in 36 U.S. states, 7 Canadian provinces and 24 countries. Each Affiliate offers local support and is responsible for the tournaments. Larger Affiliates will have two layers of competition, both Regional and Affiliate Tournaments, while others will have only one Affiliate Tournament.
Contact your Affiliate »


Teams typically form between August and January and spend 2 to 6 months developing their Team Challenge Solutions. Each season is aligned with the Northern Hemisphere academic calendar. The Challenge is noncompetitive, which helps ease pressure and lets kids play and experiment with their solutions. However, there is a showcase option, which allows teams to perform their solutions at a tournament from February to March.
DI Info Session

Free Info Sessions


Whether you are a parent, teacher, after-school provider, curriculum director, or administrator, it’s never too late to learn about how you can bring the power of Destination Imagination to your students. Register for an upcoming info session or sign up to watch it on-demand.

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