Caine's Arcade – One Boy's Cardboard Dream Come True!

Caine Monroy is a 9-year-old boy from East L.A. In the summer, he hangs out at his dad’s workplace, a used auto parts shop. To amuse himself while there, Caine often played with cardboard boxes at the shop. One day, Caine decided to do more than just play……he started to build. Out of the boxes, Caine built and built, until he had created a cardboard arcade!

After Caine built the arcade, he got to work on the details. He used old toys as prizes, created “fun passes” for people to play multiple times for one price, and even created a ticket system with slots in each game that he pushed the tickets through himself! He just needed one more thing – customers. He did have one, a man named Nirvan Mullick, who was awed by his arcade. Nirvan decided to help Caine out…. he organized a “mob” of customers who all, as they chanted, “CAME TO PLAY”! But more importantly, they came to honor the incredible achievement of this very special boy.

This video tells Caine’s amazing story.

Additional Resources:

  • Here’s an article that tells all about Caine and his wonderful arcade.
  • Here’s an interview with Nirvan that tells about the great positive impact Caine’s Arcade is having.

Topics for Discussion:

  • What do you think made Caine want to build an arcade?
  • How do you think Caine felt when Nirvan organized a “mob” of customers just for his arcade?

Take Action:

  • Think of something you love, and try building a cardboard version of it, just like Caine did!
  • Visit the Caine’s Arcade website to learn more about this talented boy and how you can support his foundation!

Teacher Features:

  • Here is a link to a Critical Reading Skills worksheet that you can use for elementary school students.
  • Here is a link to a Critical Reading Skills worksheet that you can use for middle school students.


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