Learning Values through Challenge

Posted: 30th March 2023

The children in the Reception class love to be challenged to learn new things, apply their learning independently and engage in activities that stretch their thinking. The Spring term is such that children are settled, confident with the routines of the classroom, and can feel able to deal with the discomfort that a challenge can make them feel.

We talk a lot about how challenges are not meant to be easy and how good it feels if you try hard and get close to meeting your challenge. In our daily Maths lessons, the children each have an individual challenge that they are working on. This may be writing numbers to 50 or 100 or ‘counting on’ in steps using Numicon to support them. We always begin with this ‘challenge time’ and the children are encouraged to work in ‘golden silence’ to really focus their attention on the task at hand.

Although there are sometimes disappointed faces if a child does not meet their challenge this does not deter us. The class support each other and mirror the words of their teachers, “You can try again tomorrow. It doesn’t matter if you didn’t make it today. It is supposed to be tricky or it wouldn’t be a challenge.”

Not only does this challenge time help the children to focus on their counting and number formation skills, their knowledge of the number system and the patterns they can spot, but it also enables them to develop the vital skills of independent thinking, resilience, seeking challenge and responsibility for their own learning – four of our school Learning Values.

Categories: Reception