Puzzle Challenge Days

The students encounter a variety of fun, but challenging 3D hands-on puzzle tasks, which they have to complete in teams. Most challenges last for no more than a few minutes, but require each team to work together and carefully develop strategies in order to find a solution. The temptation to give up might appear from time to time, but the programme teaches the students how to persevere, put their own skills to better use as part of a team and overcome difficulties by approaching problems from different perspectives. With the advent of the new GCSE curriculum, where a stronger emphasis on problem solving is being placed, we feel this day is an ideal springboard and foundation in Key Stage 3. In addition, our pupils have fun while they learn!
We held a puzzle challenge day for some of our senior students and invited students from one of our mainstream partner schools. It was inspiring to see both sets of youngsters interacting and working towards a goal in a fun environment. Students were also able to show progress in key areas of using and applying and space, shape and measure, including discussing patterns and problem solving. The puzzle activities are fantastic for developing our students’ spatial awareness, co-ordination, social and fine motor skills and we have now incorporated many puzzles into our daily lessons. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend these events to other special schools.
A day with the Happy Puzzle Company provides immense excitement as the children develop their awareness of team building. The activities provided caters for every child and all abilities. Once one level is mastered the children can then progress on to the next. A professional company providing enrichment to any curriculum.
Mind Missions day at the Canterbury Primary school was an entertaining and fun experience from reception to year 6! The teachers had time to watch, as well as work with small groups. It highlighted children's strengths in leadership as well as problem solving. Observing how they tackled each new challenge was interesting and has resulted in KS2 incorporating more problem solving into their classwork. Pupils who don't always shine at numeracy did surprisingly well in logical thinking and gave them a confidence boost. A KS1 pupil said "We tried and tried to make it balance. It worked best when we all took turns, then it fell off!

Brain Blaster - Think... Communicate... Solve!

Foundation Stage | KS1 | KS2 | KS3 | KS4 | 16-19


What is a Mind Missions day?

Mind Missions are hands-on maths, thinking and team-building 'expeditions', devised by top educators and run in your school hall. Up to 60 students can take part in each 'expedition' (with up to four different ‘expeditions’ per day).

Each team is given an age and ability-appropriate mission to complete. To achieve this, they will need to work together effectively, solving hands-on challenges requiring a wide variety of mathematical and thinking skills, collecting the pieces of information that will enable them to complete the mission.

The challenges are brand new and are tailored to suit each age group and ability level.


What makes these workshops so valuable and different?

Mind Missions allow students of all abilities to really engage with challenges, enhance a wide range of skills, make real progress in developing their skills and improve their academic performance at school.

Students have the opportunity to shine in practical programmes outside of the normal curriculum, build their confidence, improve their learning skills and raise their own expectations of what they can achieve. The progress that they make will have long-term benefits.

Teachers have a rare opportunity to take a step back and watch their students perform as part of a team, sharing ideas, displaying leadership skills and working as part of a team. 

At the end of each of our workshops, students are asked what they feel they have learned that will help them in the future. Almost always, we hear the same three answers...

    "Never give up!"

    "That nothing needs to be impossible."

    "The importance of working as a team."


    These are powerful messages that cover the entire curriculum as well as life outside the classroom.

    Suddenly, students realise that it's ok to make the mistakes and that in many respects there is no such thing as a 'wrong' answer. If an answer is not quite right, we can use that to drive us in the right direction towards reaching our goal.

    It's learning without a pen and paper and it gives teachers a rare opportunity to take a step back an watch their students in action. Often, it's the students that you least expect to excel, who turn out to be incredible leaders and the inspiration that leads to the groups success.


Foundation Stage | KS1 | KS2 | KS3 | KS4 | 16-19