The #UnHackathon – 2023

Where Cybersafety Meets Creativity

No Coding Or Hacking Skills Required! A new concept in digital literacy and cybersafety training. Unlike a regular hackathon, the main focus of The #UnHackathon is cybersafety education and digital media literacy through a creative design challenge.

The contest opens on May 6 and all entries must be submitted by May 21. Register to receive the contest entry details and the design challenge information. This contest is open to all students in grades 3-12 across Canada.

Students can register individually or through their teacher.

A Note to Teachers:

The Design Challenge details are available below. The students will need to read the challenge, conduct their research as appropriate for their age group (sources have been provided) and then go crazy designing their entry which must be educational to others. Entries can include almost anything: posters, videos, drawings, games, webpages, infographics. songs, etc.

Teachers can register an entire class or several classes in one registration. Students can submit their creations individually, as small teams or as an entire class.

Student using laptop and webcam.
Gain mad digital Skills by completing the Design Challenge!

Video, Poster, Webpage, Infographic, Game … you make it, You Enter It

Participants will be given a design challenge centered on teaching others about an aspect of cybersafety. Solving the challenge will require imagination, creativity, and innovation. We provide the cybersafety topic and resources and you provide the inspiration.

Last year’s topic was Online Gaming Safety. This year’s topic will be released on May 6. When the topic is published, we provide entrants with the cybersafety information resources they will use as the foundation when designing their entry. Creations should be engaging and informative; intended to teach others about that specific cybersafety topic. All entries must be submitted by midnight May 21 (EST).

Why you Should Enter the #UnHackathon

“Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn.”
― Benjamin Franklin

Cybersafety Knowledge

The best way to learn is to teach someone! Become a cybersafety champion for your family and friends.

Digital Skills

Learn how to make a vlog, design an infographic, code a game or webpage. The possibilities are endless.

Digital Media Literacy Skills

Learn to access, analyze, evaluate, and create digital media in a critical and responsible way.

Build your Portfolio

Examples of your creations can be an advantage when applying for education and employment opportunities.

Creative Expression

Use your unique imagination and perspective to create something new. Choose the medium that suits you.


Yes there are prizes, fame and glory to be had too!!

Did Someone Say Prizes?

Submit your entry by May 21 to enter the contest. Prizes will be awarded according to age group and type of entry.

Students looking at a computer.
Classroom and Teams

Team work makes the dream work! Your whole class can work together and submit a team entry.

Student talking to a webcam.

Individual students can work independently at school or at home and submit their own unique entry.

Students painting in a classroom.
Elementary Grades

Entries will be judged by age categories. Grades 3-5 and grades 6-8 will be separate categories.

Students using laptops in a classroom.
High School Grades

All entries from students in grades 9-12 will be one category. Apply your unique skills to your entry.

• Create an original entry that demonstrates the key points of the design challenge topic (see the design challenge to be posted on May 6)

• Entries can be a digital or physical and be submitted through the online submission form

• Prizes will be awarded in the following categories:

– Grade 3-5 Individual

– Grade 3-5 Team

– Grade 6-8 Individual

– Grade 6-8 Team

– Grade 9-12 Individual

– Grade 9-12 Team

• All Canadian K-12 students are eligible.


Creativity (50 points): The entry displays originality, ingenuity, and innovation in its presentation and execution.

Educational Value (30 points): The entry provides valuable and informative content that educates and enlightens the viewer.

Viewer Engagement (20 points): The entry captivates and holds the viewer’s attention, provoking thought and curiosity.


Creativity (30 points): The entry demonstrates some level of originality, ingenuity, and innovation in its presentation and execution.

Educational Value (50 points): The entry provides informative and useful content that educates and enlightens the viewer to some extent.

Viewer Engagement (20 points): The entry manages to capture and maintain the viewer’s attention for the most part but may lack in provoking thought and curiosity.

Entries will be evaluated based on the above criteria to determine which entries will be considered a Winning Entry or an Honourable Mention. The entries that demonstrate exceptional creativity, educational value, and viewer engagement will be awarded as Winning Entry. Entries that demonstrate a good level of creativity and educational value but may lack in viewer engagement will be awarded an Honourable Mention.

Think you can’t? Think again!

Previous Winners

The only limit is your creativity and imagination!

Cybersafety Infographic

“Winning the UnHackathon was like reaching the top of a mountain, but the real adventure was in the climb. I learned so much and had so much fun along the way, and I can’t wait to see where my love for graphic design will take me next!”

– Past #UnHackathon Winner

Students sitting around a desk and talking in a classroom.
Develop Digital Literacy skills while having Fun!

Digital Literacy Skills

Learning digital media literacy skills is no longer an option, but an absolute necessity. In today’s digital age, youth are not just consumers of information, but creators and distributors as well. By gaining the knowledge and skills to critically analyze, evaluate, and produce digital content, you are empowered to navigate and participate in our rapidly changing digital landscape with confidence and responsibility.

Cybersituational awareness refers to the ability to understand and interpret the complex and rapidly changing digital landscape. It involves being aware of online risks, mitigating potential threats, managing your online activities, accounts and actions responsibly, and identifying vulnerabilities in your digital environment, your devices and networks. It is an essential component of digital literacy.

For more resources, including ready-to-teach classroom curriculum, expert videos and tip sheets. visit our initiative dedicated to teachers and parents.


In Partnership with ICTC

The #UnHackathon is one of the many ways that The Information and Communications Technology Council (ICTC) is partnering with Canadian industry, government, not-for-profits and the education sector to increase digital literacy skills in youth and adults and to provide educators with tools and resources.

ICTC believes in the importance of developing a highly skilled, educated and motivated ICT/digital workforce that will drive Canada’s economic growth and innovation. In partnership with Canadian industry, government, not-for-profits and the education sector, ICTC strives to define critical competencies and standards; build education and employment pathways for youth and adult learners to increase digital literacy/skills; provide educators with tools and resources to enhance learning, and connect youth to jobs.

The #UnHackathon is a

Science Odyssey Event