Bridging the Dental Gap


+400 Points

We understand that taking care of our pearly whites is a big deal, but it's not always easy, especially for kids in under-resourced communities. Your mission? Do some digging to find out why oral health is falling through the cracks in the U.S. or your community, and then let your creative genius run wild! Come up with a unique product, a cutting-edge business idea, or an awe-inspiring viral marketing campaign to make sure every child has an opportunity for a healthy smile. Show off your brilliant ideas with a video pitch to The Delta Dental Institute for a chance to win $$$, and of course, add an amazing real-world project to your resume and college applications.

In this Challenge, you'll explore the question:

How can oral health be improved for kids in under-resourced communities?

This Challenge is still available to earn points!! The prize money was awarded to past winners.

Add this experience to your resume, LinkedIn, portfolio, etc. See our guide 'How to Add a Challenge to a Resume,' which includes sample bullet points.

HealthcareEarn Points!
Delta Dental - main image

Skills you'll develop

  • Problem Solving
  • Communication
  • Social Awareness


You're ready to CREATE a prototype of your idea. This is what you'll use to explain your brilliant idea to the judges!

Choose ONE of the categories for your solution: product design, business concept, or marketing campaign. You can use the selection checklist to help you choose a category.

icon business (3)

Create a Business Concept

It's time to get creative and CREATE a prototype of your idea. This is what you'll use to explain your awesome solution! By the end of the Create phase, you should be able to:

  • Show your Business Blueprint

  • Explain how you created your prototype(s)

  • Share your feedback and demonstrate how you revised your prototype(s)

  • Be ready to create your video pitch

Understand the Create Phase for a Business

⏱️Time: 4-5 Hours (Week 3 of Challenge)

✏️Use the optional KNOtebook to record your ideas

💼 Mentor: Get feedback from a mentor, and others, on your business concept

🎯 Future Ready Skills: Problem-Solving, Collaboration

Business Concept

In this phase, you'll create a concept for a new or improved "business". Perhaps, a for-profit business or a non-profit organization?

Meet a Professional

Yay! You have an idea for a business, organization, or service! First, let’s meet someone who started their own business.

Your Favorites

Your "business" idea may be a for-profit business, like a restaurant or shoe store; an organization, like the Girls and Boys Club or a sports team or a service, like Uber or tutoring, for example.

Think of a business, organization, or service that you really love or one that solves a hard problem or meets a deep need. Ask yourself: 

  1. What makes this company one of my favorites?

  2. What value does it add to my life?

  3. What problem does it solve?

  4. What do I like/dislike about their name?

influencer-4492841 1280

Business Planning

Use a Business Design Framework to help you plan out your idea.

Business Design Framework

All businesses, organizations and services create something of value, gain from it, and deliver it to customers. The following framework is useful for business, organization, or service planning. Flip the cards to learn about each element of the framework.


Create Value

Create Value

What problem are you solving? What are you creating that someone will benefit from and pay for? For example, Uma's business addressed the problem of people not being able to celebrate occasions because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Capture Value

Capture Value

How will you make sure that you benefit from creating the business? How will your business spend money in order to deliver value to its customers? For example, Lawn Party charged $50+ for each sign and used the money to create more signs, pay for gas, etc.

Deliver Value

Deliver Value

Who does your business serve? How will they benefit from your business, organization, or service? How are you providing this value for your customers? For example, Lawn Party allowed its customers to use customized lawn signs to celebrate their important moments while preventing the spread of COVID-19.

Review the slide show below to understand how to put together a business concept.

You may wish to use this Google Doc Business Blueprint which is also in your KNOtebook.

Rapid Prototyping

Rapid Prototyping Example

Now that you have a blueprint, you're ready to create a prototype to get feedback. Rapid prototyping is the process of turning assumptions into opportunities to learn. You can create all kinds of prototypes to transform abstract concepts into something that people can experience. Prototypes should be real enough to get valid reactions from people, but not so real that they take a long time to build. Watch the video to see a unique example of prototyping.

Prototyping is an iterative process and involves the following:

Live Prototyping Examples

Live prototyping is one way to get feedback. It can be hard but is also fun and rewarding. You can learn a lot in a short time. Flip the cards to see some different types of rapid prototyping.

lemonade stand

“Lemonade Stand”

“Lemonade Stand”

Make a small batch of your food product and bring to your class to get feedback, or set up a mini store in your class. This is sometimes referred to as a “lemonade stand” prototype.
skip app

An App Experience

An App Experience

Instead of creating a working app to test, spend time prototyping the app experience. For example, if it's a service: hang posters to promote, have people submit texts, respond to texts, do the physical act, like standing in line to pick up food.
Tiny-Mile-1 (1)

Community Testing

Community Testing

Try a pop-up in a store or venue that is relevant to your product or service, or create a prototype and try it out in your community.

Physical Prototyping Examples

Creating physical prototypes is another way to test your ideas and get feedback.

408103917 43e0855274 b

Paper Prototypes

Paper Prototypes

Paper prototypes might be sketches and diagrams drawn quickly on a napkin or using a ruler and pen, but you don’t need to be an artist! A paper prototype is useful at the beginning of the process of conceptualizing a new idea, enabling you to create multiple versions of your idea quickly and get feedback.
5847138502 4e676af7a6 b

Small Scale Models

Small Scale Models

You may want to create a quick sample of what your idea will look like using building materials, such as: cardboard, Legos, blocks, etc. Or, you may want to create a digital model.
4174319172 61e5aae5f3 o (1)



Storyboards can communicate a concept by visualizing user interactions. They focus on a person’s experience and tell a story.

Prototyping Tools

Using your Business Blueprint as a guide and your selected materials, determine what aspect of the business you’d like to prototype first and how you’d like to prototype, then start creating! Consider using the the following tools:

  1. Building materials: Great for prototyping processes, infrastructures, and work flows and just fun for everyone.

  2. Recyclables: Take something apart and use the parts for your prototype or dig into your recycling bin and see what you can use. 

  3. Video: A short and scrappy video can go a long way to communicate anything.

  4. Paper, cardboard: Sketching, drawing, diagramming, building

pexels-ono-kosuki-5973969 (1)

Testing & Feedback

Now that you have your first prototype, it's time to share it and get feedback so that you can improve it.

Testing Plan

Take a look at an example of creating a testing plan to get feedback.

Testing Suggestions

Getting Feedback

Consider using any of the following methods to structure and organize your feedback-gathering process. Select the plus signs.

Iterative Process


After you get feedback, it’s time to make changes to your prototype or prototype another part of your product. Remember, the goal is not for your prototypes to be universally loved. The goal is to get as much feedback as you can to help you make your concept better. Continue to prototype, test, and iterate as much as you can, until you are satisfied with your prototype. This may be a multi-day process and is not to be rushed.

iterate-process (1)
mentor feedback

Mentor Moment

Get feedback from a professional who will be judging your project!

Consider how you will test and get feedback from a mentor who may be reviewing your prototype online and giving written feedback. Depending on what you create as prototypes, you could scan, take a photo, or capture video to share and get feedback. You may want to use the “I Like, I Wish, What If...” or the grid method.

Get feedback on your prototype now!

PRO Criteria

Continue to prototype, test, and iterate, as time allows and you feel happy with your final prototype. 

Make sure your prototype demonstrates that your idea is:

  1. Purposeful: Addresses the problem 

  2. Results: Will have an impact

  3. Original: Is unique from everything that already exists or builds on something in a new way

KnoPro PRO

Next Steps

Ready to Move On?

Do you feel prepared to create your video pitch? Can you show and explain the following. If so, great for you! The hard part is over now you get to share your idea! Flip the cards to see if you're ready to move on to "Pitch."


Prototype Plan

Prototype Plan

How did you plan your prototype? Share and explain your plan with someone. Did you use it to guide your process? Did you change it?

Prototype Creation

Prototype Creation

How did you create your prototype? What materials did you use? What was challenging? How did you overcome those challenges? Show the different prototypes that you created.

Prototype Feedback

Prototype Feedback

How did you get feedback on your prototype? What method(s) did you use? How useful was the feedback? What kind of revisions did you make based on the feedback?

Pitch It!

Now you get to create a video pitch for your idea. Be ready to WOW the KnoPro judges!