Global Entrepreneurship Week

On Wednesday 20th November 2013 students from Aldridge Academies across the country took part in the Operation Moon Base Challenge to celebrate Global Entrepreneurship Week (GEW) 2013.

From Darwen in the North to Brighton, Portslade and the Isle of Portland in the South of the UK students from the ages of 5 to 18 worked together to on a day-long challenge to design the best possible human colony for the newly discovered moon. They kicked off this intergalactic challenge by reading dossiers on potential crew members and hand picking the perfect crew to take with them. While identifying crucial skills and character traits students they thought about what the right balance would be between practical and aspirational skills and what jobs would be indispensable.

Global Entrepreneurship Week

Following the selection of the Crew for their new Moon Base Year 7 and 8 students at Darwen Aldridge Community Academy (DACA) were extremely imaginative as pupils set about genetically engineering the most useful animal for their crew to take with them. Wings, horns, teeth and udders; the animals had them all (all on one animal in some cases). The animal designs took in to account the practicalities of a small colony and the limited resources that would be at their disposal: one team from DACA enthused “our animal has wool for clothes, milk to drink and three different meats to eat… and it lays eggs!” The creativity and imagination really took off at this point and the colonists looked to be set up with the best possible companions.

286 miles away at Portslade Aldridge Community Academy (PACA) students reflected that whilst selecting the right people might be important for a new colony, the rules that govern them are possibly more so. Team Revolution from Luna House at PACA reflected that “while we don’t anticipate a great deal of crime – of course we would be naïve to believe that our society will be perfect” so it was vital that teams put together some laws that would govern their new Moon Base in a just and fair way. Teams lowered the voting age, criminalised littering, discussed the possibility of some very medieval punishments but above all explored the skill of analysis before agreeing on their new laws.

Global Entrepreneurship Week

Throughout the day students at Brighton Aldridge Community Academy (BACA), under the leadership of their 6th formers, explored the Enterprise Skills of team-work, leadership, presenting and being creative to name a few. Once laws had been agreed, teams then worked to design their new societies by exploring the world of architecture to town-planning. Teams at BACA were even able to employ new 3D design technology to create 3D plans of their new Moon Bases. BACA’s 6th form demonstrated all the Enterprise Skills as they formed the judging panel to decide on the school’s overall winning team: a huge responsibility but a challenge that they rose to and excelled in according to Enabling Enterprise.

Last but, by no means least students from Nursery all the way to Year 10 at the Isle of Portland Aldridge Community Academy (IPACA) joined forces to demonstrate their technological prowess by creating video adverts for their new Moon Bases. Primary students used green screens and IPads to film informative adverts about their Moon Bases whilst secondary students worked in family groups to film persuasive adverts using Google Chrome Books. Teachers had planned the day so that even the youngest of students at IPACA were able to engage with the day through Playdough cities, astronaut fancy dress and computer programmes to design new animals. Overall the progress in team-work amongst the students both at primary and secondary level was overwhelming; one teacher at IPACA Secondary reflected that whilst teamwork can be a challenge, “they are working so well in their teams on this challenge today”.

Arguably, whilst all of the students and staff that took part in this immense, nationwide challenge day were winners in their own right there was only room for one finalist from each academy. It was then up to each winning team to represent their academy in the GEW 2013 final in London and go head to head to compete for the title of GEW Winners 2013.

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