ARK Tindal Goes Intergalactic

“Excellent, fun-filled and different.” – ARK Tindal Teacher summing up the day.

Students at ARK Tindal Primary Academy in Moseley, Birmingham came together for their first Enabling Enterprise Challenge Day. Having been working on lesson-time projects on every Friday afternoon since October, this was their chance to show off their Challenge Skills and impress their teachers and the EE Team alike. Their task was to design a new Moon-based society from scratch, becoming managers, designers, builders and advertising executives – not bad for a day’s work!

Following a rousing launch assembly supported by three students in full costumes representing different jobs, teams settled in their classrooms to come up with a team name befitting the scale of the challenge ahead: ‘Galaxy Hunters’, ‘Planet Future’ and ‘Flying Stars’ to name but a few. Having aced NASA’s Intergalactic Quiz designed to test students’ knowledge of jobs and skills, students were ready to take the helm of ‘Operation Moon-Base’.

Before lift-off, a major problem had to be solved: the entire crew had come down with a nasty virus and were no longer fit to fly. If the mission was to go ahead students had to quickly decide which professionals would take the place of the poorly astronauts. This was tricky as some ‘Top Secret’ documents revealed not all the candidates were what they first appeared… Reflecting on leadership, one Year 6 team summed it up:“A leader is someone who makes decisions. They are calm and respectful, they include everyone and make sure everyone feels valued and stays positive.”

Tindal students unleashed their creativity when it came to designing a new species of animal which would help the new society. For example: combining features of dragons and chickens, the ‘Chickdragon’ offered protection, food (eggs) and transport and included both tasty chicken wings and strong, flight-ready dragon wings. Another team decided that their eagle-eyed animal would lay eggs with something different in them each time. Thus combining surprise, entertainment and practicality.

Having created beautiful and clearly labelled pictures of their animals, teams faced another tough decision. It became apparent that the £10 Million budget they had for constructing buildings would not stretch very far. It was time to think carefully about what problems the new society might face and how these could be solved.

“If people get home sick they can go to our religious building because even though they might have different faiths they can all come together and help each other.” Year 4 student explaining the reasoning behind their choice of buildings.

Over in Year 1 and 2 students created 3D versions of their society using Lego to dazzling effect. Police stations were modified to induce laser turrets and lunar vehicles for patrolling the inhabited areas. Another team included a whole sci-fi inspired control centre for the rocket launch pad.

With a very productive day behind them, teams went on to compete for the winning spot in each class. Taking on the role of advertising executives, teams thought hard about how to ‘sell’ their ideas to their peers and secure their votes. Congratulations to the winners who will be receiving their certificates in assembly later this week!

Our huge thanks go to the ARK Tindal team for their energy and enthusiasm which made this such a great day for the students. Here are a few reflections from the teaching staff:

“The students took pride in their completed work and progressed well with teamwork.”

“The students worked really well in teams. They used all the Challenge Skills and produced great work.”

“Fantastic! The children loved the day and were engaged throughout.”