Feedback from a lecturer following a masterclass in Mildenhall

Wednesday, 15th May, 2019

Tomorrow’s Achievers – Problem Solving masterclass

 

I started with the usual introductions, clear relief from the children that it was not going to be a day of IPads and computer activities or more 'maths'.

 

We discussed problems, made models and solved problems.

 

One student, who already had a Rubik’s cube, said she found it fun but could never solve it. We talked and she made a paper Rubik's that would never be other than solved because it had no moving parts. A very funny, very clever solution.

 

The 'puzzle' was seen in a perspective as an amusing object. Like all clever children in a safe environment, they wanted to play and have a chance to talk with another person as clever as themselves or, in fact, even cleverer would be good. Some children already had a Rubik’s cube, others could only dream of having a new pair of shoes sometime.

 

As the day went on I discovered these were very clever children from deeply challenging situations with very little money and certainly no easy route, if any to getting into university or realising their true potential.

 

Final thoughts on the day from the children?

 

The answer to the human problem was not simply one of terra forming (child’s phrase) other planets, because it would be “the same homo-sapiens building the new world” and nothing would change - the solution was “time and education and learning to love and understand each other to end wars and then build other worlds”.

 

It was one of the best days I have had in a very long time.

 

John, Tomorrow’s Achievers’ tutor

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