by Sarah Robinson – Primary Teacher, Outside Education
- To know that your brain has an incredible capacity to learn new things.
- To develop a positive attitude to learning.
- Book: The Archaeology Fox by Stuart Anderson Harris
- Paper and pens
- Internet and non-fiction books
- A selection of household items or toys
Activity: Read and discuss The Archaeology Fox
- Little Fox doesn’t want to use his brain at the start of the story. He thinks his mum and dad’s enthusiasm for learning is daft and boring. He’s stuck in a fixed mindset which is a bit like him packing away his brain in a box and closing the lid.
- Remember: your brain enables you to do amazing things, especially if you make good use it! If you practise tricky activities and explore the things you’re curious about, you can help your brain and body learn new skills and become more capable.
- Do you think Little Fox should leave his brain to rest? Or should he ‘open the box’, challenge his brain and help it grow?!
- Curiosity soon gets the better of Little Fox. He begins to take more interest in his mum and dad’s projects. Although he doesn’t understand, he asks questions: What is mum doing? Why is dad looking at that? He now demonstrates a growth mindset.
- With new experiences, try having an open-minded approach and say Yes, I want to know more! You might not fully understand straight away, but that’s ok! Be a discoverer! Asking questions is a great way to start: ..? How….? What’s happening here?
Activity: What are you eager to know?!
- Brainstorm all the things you always wanted to know. You could create a written list of questions, draw pictures or chat to an adult at home and ask them to record your discussion. Eg: Why does it go dark at night? Why do rainbows appear? Who invented television?
- Choose one topic to explore in more detail and really immerse yourself in this topic! Question people in your family to find out more about the subject, read books and do internet research.
Activity: Memory Game (What’s Under the Blanket?)
- A quick brain-teasing game to develop memory and recall. Gather familiar household objects or toys (approximately 10 items) and lay them out on a flat surface. Close your eyes and/or take a large blanket and cover them. Now ask an another person to remove one item.
- Remove the blanket to reveal the objects again and try to work out what went missing!
- Repeat the exercise but instead of laying out the objects randomly, try grouping them into categories (put all the items of fruit together, toys together, cutlery together etc). Do you find that organising the objects into categories helps your brain remember more effectively? Why do you think this is?