How do you get kids to actually enjoying learning about statistics? Get pizza involved.
A New Jersey math teacher assigned her eighth-graders a project in which they had to design a food product based on real world statistics and pitch the product to a real company.
Anne Paoletti-Boyna, teacher at Clearview Middle School in Harrison Township, told the South Jersey Times that kids had to conduct surveys among other classmates to test the market and then pitch their idea to the right company.
Students Nick Gabriele, Sean Flannery, and Allyson Sooy decided to create the “ultimate pizza” with a bacon-macaroni and cheese-pretzel stuffed crust pizza after gathering data about favorite foods among their peers. After sending their idea of Pizza Hut’s Dallas headquarters, the trio received an unexpected surprise.
— Seventeen (@seventeen) April 23, 2015
"Someone at Pizza Hut found the letter, read it, and liked it," Paoletti-Bayna announced to her class.
In an excerpt from the letter, obtained via People.com, the big guys at Pizza Hut were excited by the kids’ enthusiasm and research tactics:
“Here at Pizza Hut, we get ideas for new recipes sent to us all the time. The research and logic behind your product was definitely one that inspired us to respond, as you had clearly worked together as a team to come up with an innovative idea that Pizza Hut customers will love. Your prototype got our team of chefs in Dallas, TX thinking, and we believe this pizza has the potential to make it to the next level of customer research: a taste test.”
On Tuesday, the kids of Paoletti-Boyna’s class received the shock of the year when Pizza Hut team members visited the class—with their imaginary pizza creation come to life.
Pizza Hut's manager of development Barbie King says she though the pretzel crust was “awesome” and was tasked with bringing the dream pizza to fruition.
"We thought it was a great idea. Taking three things and putting them together like that adds up exponentially,' King told the South Jersey Times.
So how did this ultimate comfort-food mashup actually taste?
"I think it's great," Sooy, one of the original inventors, said as she tried a slice.
Unfortunately, Pizza Hut has no plans on bringing a macaroni and cheese-stuffed crust to the mass market, reports People. But this little contest proves that sometimes big food execs are willing to take a gamble on a creative guy—so it never hurts to submit an idea.