Pupils left puzzling over challenge day

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A north Northumberland first school hosted a schools’ puzzle challenge day last week after receiving a Kickstart Grant for British Science Week.

The event at Acklington Community Hall was hosted by Acklington CE First School last Thursday.

Pupils at Acklington First School enjoy the activities during their Puzzle Day.

Pupils at Acklington First School enjoy the activities during their Puzzle Day.

During the day, pupils were joined by some of the children from Amble First School, Amble Links First School, Broomhill First School, Grange View CE First School and Red Row First School to experience practical team puzzling and problem-solving activities, as presented by the Happy Puzzle Company.

The company’s programmes use large 3D team puzzles and challenges, which all look incredibly easy until the students start trying to solve them.

Educational psychologist and programme creator Gavin Ucko said: “It’s learning without a pen and paper and it gives teachers a rare opportunity to take a step back and watch their students in action.

“Often, it’s the students you least expect to excel, who turn out to be incredible leaders and the inspiration that leads a group to success.”

Joint acting headteacher Gail Van Schalkwyk said: “We are very excited about this project and extremely proud to have the opportunity to host the Happy Puzzle Company.

“Developing inquiring minds and resilient children is at the heart of Acklington CE First School’s curriculum. We are delighted to be able to share this learning opportunity with others schools in the Coquet Partnership.”