ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — Rockford design and engineering students capped off the school year trying to race boats built from cardboard and duct tape on Friday.

The Cardboard Canoe Race was held at Levings Lake. Winners were judged on the presentation of their canoe, their engineering design, and the race standings.

East High School junior Wah Ler Htaw said it took his team weeks to perfect and build their canoe.

“Hopefully, we can make it around [the lake] and have a good time,” he said.

Htaw said the secret to building a good canoe out of such flimsy materials is to have a sturdy base.

Awards were given out to the best theme and speed, and the Titanic award went to the boat with the most dramatic sinking.

“I think it’s a really exciting way to sort of wrap up the school year,” said Bridget French, the Executive Director for College and Career Readiness for the Rockford Public School District.

“It gives students an opportunity to take what they have learned in the classroom and actually bring it out here and have fun with it,” she said.

French said the canoe race allows students to show off their engineering skills.

“All of the hard work and planning, for the curriculum and the classroom experiences, and then seeing it put into practice outside, seeing students having fun, it’s what makes it all worth it,” she said.

Htaw said being around his peers, in nature, and doing something different is the perfect way to end the week and the school year.

“I’m just enjoying this moment, the moment itself,” he said.

Ultimately, the school that scored the best in all categories was Guilford High School.