"Necessity is the mother of invention"

This old adage was fully realized for Chris Phelps, the day her daughter Emma, then halfway through her kindergarten year, nonchalantly used her first four letter word. Shocked and unprepared for the moment, Chris panicked –then got creative – and Tacky Box came to be. Tacky Box was a mom’s impromptu attempt to help her daughter choose her words and actions carefully. And, thanks to Emma’s choice to be kind, it worked.

It started with a four letter word and evolved into a collaborative effort to make the world a kinder place, one child at a time.”
— Chris Phelps, Founder & CEO
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evolved from the mind of a child, for children

The unexpected result was how well it worked – not just on four letter words but also unkind phrases and tacky behavior – and the resulting ripple effect. After the first week, Emma and her little brother, Jake, both began to take pride in distinguishing between what was appropriate and inappropriate and in policing their own words and actions. Even Justin Timberlake made it into Emma's box after shouting "Shut Up" at a music awards ceremony. Proud of their individual decisions to be kind, they began to encourage those around them to make the same choice, and more often than not, they did.

Knowing every parent faces the issue of tacky words and behavior, Chris and her mom, Cindy Kent, partnered up to share the idea that worked so well for Emma and Jake. As a former educator and professional artist who understands the value of a lesson, Cindy created Margo and Max the Monkeys to help tell Emma’s story and hopefully make the job of a parent a little bit easier by creating a visual and hands on tool.

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CREATED IN PARTNERSHIP WITH EDUCATORS

Knowing every parent faces the issue of tacky words and behavior, Chris and her mom, Cindy Kent, partnered up to share the idea that worked so well for Emma and Jake. As a former educator and professional artist who understands the value of a lesson, Cindy created Margo and Max the Monkeys to help tell Emma’s story and hopefully make the job of a parent a little bit easier by creating a visual and hands on tool.

In 2014 and 2015, Tacky Box® was used in schools by a number of educators and counselors across the nation who had been introduced to it through media attention and educational trade shows.  In the 2015-2016 school year, with the support of Atmos Energy, a school district in North Texas officially piloted the program in 27 of its elementary schools, impacting over 10,000 children.

 

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PILOT PROGRAM

In 2014 and 2015, Tacky Box® was used in schools by a number of educators and counselors across the nation who had been introduced to it through media attention and educational trade shows.  In the 2015-2016 school year, with the support of Atmos Energy, a school district in North Texas officially piloted the program in 27 of its elementary schools, impacting over 10,000 children.

The results have been astonishing.   School counselors, educators and administrators are seeing first-hand the impact that the multi-sensory program has on children.  There is now a plan to scale the implementation of Tacky Box® across Texas and a waiting list of schools across the nation.