This post has been baking in the thinking-oven for near on a year now, following a 2015 TES post – Summer homework assignment went viral. The original assignment had many interesting challenges and a really good balance of creativity, reflection and education and back in August when I read about it, I save the article and put a challenge reminder in for a week before the broke up for summer.
A good deal is different since last August. Not least that I have moved counties and the summer holidays started a week early. Nevertheless, up popped the reminder and I set to work on the “2016 Summer Challenge” over the weekend. I have tried to retain that light-hearted balance, reusing a good handful of the original challenges, however I have switched out a fair few challenges as well to promote our school ethos, extend school learning from this academic year or in preparation for September. I have also added one of my favourite maths tasks, weighting, measuring and cooking American style pancakes. Second, as I now work in an all-through school, I designed two sets of overlapping challenge programmes – Adventurer or Voyager crossing the Year 4 – 7 and Year 6 – 9 year groups. I have not proscribed included the target audience on the challenge sheets, rather left it up to students to select which sheet they want to attempt (glass ceilings and all that jazz). Lastly, I have added one additional twist. Given our ability to auto-schedule posts on our website I have scheduled the release of five additional challenges. Look, lets be honest, John Hanke (Niantic CEO) does not see me as a threat however I do hope that our students and summer-holiday-weary parents will enjoy themselves. I know the students enjoyed the American style pancakes homework.
I do think that it is important to personalised both the challenges and challenge sheet, marrying them up to your school, hence I have made the editable document available. If you swing back in September and I will tell you how it went.
John Hanke, Niantic CEO, creators of Pokémon Go” developer Niantic, likes it.