I’ve been interested for a while of the power of sticks in many different learning opportunities since reading about the way Scottish teacher Julie Robertson @creativeSTAR has been using them in outdoor numeracy lessons on her blog I’m a teacher get me outside here.

Then today at #lob11 we were all given a stick. The purpose of our stick was to use it to draw in the sand, as part of the explainer Olympics – explain something about learning or that you have learnt in one minute using only a stick to draw in the sand. Everyone having a stick meant we could all join in with each others diagrams and collaborate, or sketch in the sand whilst listening to each other. We also used our sticks to vote for our favourite explanation, with Mags and Tim being awarded joint gold.


Tim and Sarah then shared with us another couple of ideas for using the sticks for problems solving. They laid out the sticks like this:

The idea was without moving the rocks could you use just the three sticks to balance another smaller rock without anything touching the ground. I won’t post the answer, you can email me if you want to know 😉

The other problem we were set was working in groups of 4, balancing a stick on our index finger, could we get a stick to the floor without just dropping it – much harder than it sounds!!

Another idea I’ve come across before (on our residential) is make 10 with 9 sticks. Really interesting as there’s lots of ways to do it.

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