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Cooks Spinney monthly challenges boost reading, writing and maths skills

Cooks Spinney Primary Academy / Wed 10th Mar 2021 pm31 01:38pm

MONTHLY challenges are helping children to build a love and talent for reading, writing and maths.

Pupils in all year groups at Cooks Spinney Primary Academy, in Harlow, are set monthly challenges to give them alternative ways to indulge in the key skills.

Maths challenges have included open-ended investigations, completing 30 challenges in 30 days and going on a maths treasure hunt.

Maths lead Jess Farrell said: “It has been great to see children completing these challenges, even during home learning.


“The aims of the challenges are to build a love for maths and to help pupils to have a stronger conceptual understanding of connections between different mathematical ideas.

“We have seen an increase in interest in maths, due to pupils discovering new approaches from the challenges.”

In writing, challenges have included writing a 500-word story using a suggested introduction, while in reading pupils have been challenged to read in the bath or set up a book display in their bedroom to give them somewhere to go for reading inspiration.

Magdalena Dackombe, English curriculum lead, said: “Each month, pupils are introduced to a variety of reading challenges, which encourage them to read more books and read different kinds of books. 

“The idea is for children to expand their reading horizons by seeking out books they might not typically pick up. Our reluctant readers might make a game out of finding and reading new books. Reading challenges open their eyes to the world of literature, build up confidence, enhance their reading life and allow them to discover a whole new way of enjoying books.

“To boost our pupils’ creativity, develop their writing skills and fire their imagination, each month we set a writing challenge to write a short story prompted by an image and a story starter. We want to help our pupils to develop their writing skills and unlock their creativity.

“The pupils benefit from these challenges as we’re pushing them out of their comfort zone by asking them to produce work in a different form.”

Pupils who complete the challenges are awarded with a book and a certificate.

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