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The Winners of the Independence Challenge Show the Amazing Way Kids Are Stepping Up Right Now

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Read Time: 3 minutes

We know kids are awesome, amazing, and astonishingly capable. Yet, the entries in the Let Grow Independence Challenge still impressed and surprised us. Through essay, photo, and video entries, kids all over the country showed how they’re stepping up their independence during this unprecedented time. Here are the top contest winners of the independence challenge. The grand prize winner will receive a $500 gift card, and six runners-up will each receive a $100 gift card.

Thanks to all the incredible kids who entered this independence challenge contest. We know when adults step back, kids step up. And this is exactly the kind of thing we need to celebrate right now. Check out the video of some of the entries below.

If you want to keep encouraging your own kids to step up and be independent, get our free Independence Kit.

Grand Prize Winner of the Independence Challenge

Kingsley conquers her entire day in video.

Independence Challenge Kingsley

Grand prize winner Kingsley Perez shot and edited her video entirely on her own. “Helping around the house makes me feel good about myself,” she says. Check out her awesome award-winning video. 


In this essay, Sable shows how she overcomes anxiety by figuring things out on her own.

Independence Challenge Sable

“Being independent is like getting a power-up in a video game or winning a prize at the claw machine,” Sable writes. Her entire essay is wonderful, and you can check it out here. 


Yug cooks for himself and his brother, as he explains in his essay.

Independence Challenge Yug

Yug’s current goal is to be able to crack an egg on his own, right over the pan. “Because you can get burned the first time you do it,” he writes in his essay. “I was burned twice.” He’s currently cracking his eggs in a measuring cup, but he’s determined to get to the next level. He’s also making omelets, guacamole, and snacks for his little brother. He writes, “I think I can teach people how to cook food now. It’s like I am a mom. Actually I am dad. I love being independent. It makes me feel happy!” Here’s Yug’s essay in full. 


This photo shows how Mila steps up while her dad is overseas in the independence challenge.

Independence Challenge Mila

“I have a new baby brother, and my mom is breastfeeding him,” Mila Abbas writes. “I want to make sure mom and baby get the best nutrition, so I make breakfast for my mom every day.” Mila’s dad is stuck overseas because of COVID-19, and she said she can’t wait for him to come home so she can make healthy meals for him, too.


In her essay for the independence challenge, Alia figures out that growing up isn’t so bad after all.

Independence Challenge Alia

“Now I practice doing things on my own and figuring things out on my own,” Alia Lanier writes in her award-winning essay. Alia says she used to rely on her mom for everything, but now she’s doing so many things on her own for the first time. Check out her amazing essay in its entirety.


Alice masters the stove at the age of 7 in this independence challenge video.

Independence Challenge Alice

“It’s so accomplishing to think I made my own food,” says 7-year-old Alice Holmes. “I learned how to make my own food because my parents take forever. To me, it even tastes better than when mom and dad make my food.” The full video of her making toad in the hole (she prefers to call it frog in a teacup) is right here.


This photo for the independence challenge shows Kylie learning how to be a problem-solver.

Independence Challenge Kylie

“She saw the check engine light come on and wondered what was all under the hood,” writes Kylie Thurman’s mom. She says she learned how to check the oil and other car basics at Kylie’s age, and she’s glad her daughter’s learning, too.

Plus check out these contest honorable mentions!

We had so many great entries from this contest, making it really hard to pick the winners. Here are a few more we loved.

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