Primary challenges (ages 5-11)

Typically completed by 5-11 year olds, CREST Star and SuperStar challenges relate to everyday experiences. Children complete eight activities to gain a CREST Award, with each activity taking between 45 minutes and one hour to complete.

The activities are designed to be easy-to-run and low-cost. You don’t need to be a teacher, have a science background or have access to specialist equipment to run them. The packs contain helpful hints and tips for you to use, explaining the scientific themes and offering guidance on conversation topics for your children.

There are more CREST approved resources that have been developed by our partners and providers specific to your region.

To browse the packs, click the buttons below or scroll down.

5 years ago

All Star challenges

  • Text
  • Cosmic
  • Materials
  • Association
  • Registered
  • Stella
  • Plants
  • Encourage
  • Astro
  • Timers
  • Rainbow


STARTING SOUNDS Starting Sounds Organiser’s Card 543 About the activity STARTING SOUNDS This activity is designed to get children thinking about the variety of sounds that can be made using different materials. It is Startown Sports Day and the first race is about to begin but the starting gun has broken. Gem and Cosmic need to make a loud sound to start the race using the materials available around the field. Through this activity you will support your group to: • Research the different sounds which can be 543 made using different materials • Choose one or more materials to make a loud starting sound. • Test out their ideas to see which is the loudest Kit list Items that might be found around the field on sports day, for example: • Plastic drinks bottles of various sizes, crisp tubes, sandwich boxes, cones, hoops, plastic skittles, stomper stilts, quoits, spoons, batons, sticks. • A selection of fillings for the containers, such as sand, small bouncy balls, pebbles, gravel. (Use your imagination!) • Tape to seal containers • Sound sensor (optional) What to do 1. Introduce the activity by reading the story on the activity card together. Get the children to talk together about the questions and the opinions of Gem, Cosmic and Uncle Astro. 2. What can they tell you about making sounds? Share ideas about what they might find on the sports field, or in their picnics, that they can use. 3. Provide a range of materials, for example those listed in the Kit list, or if you tell the story in advance, the children can collect resources for themselves. 4. Encourage the children to think about how to make the loudest sound and how to do this safely. 5. Let the children try out their own ideas before giving any help. 6. Test completed starting sounds outside. 7. They can test the sounds by finding out which can be heard from furthest away. Alternatively you can use a sound sensor. 8. There are follow up activities for children who have finished or who want to do more at home and earn a bonus sticker. To present their ideas they can draw someone starting a race, or write a letter to Cosmic and Gem describing how to make your loudest starting sound.

Things to think about A single sharp sound is better for the athletes to hear than a shaky sound, so a starting gun is used to signal the start of track and field races. Competitive races are started using a synthesized noise which sounds like a real gun. There is still a starting gun but it triggers an electronic sound rather than making a bang itself. The main problem with starting races is making sure it is fair for everyone. There is a tiny advantage being closer to the starting gun, but with an electronic system the sound can be fed to speakers behind each athlete. Take it further Doing this activity outside means that children can make really loud sounds. You could set up a mini sports day, with the resources set out, to give it a real context. SOUNDS If children use the sounds to start real races, they are likely to find that the shaky sounds are not as good as hitting sounds. When testing sounds STARTING be sensitive to children SOUNDS with hearing problems. For competitions with deaf athletes, a light is used to signal the start of a race. 543 Keywords • Sound • Volume • Outside • Racing • Materials Watch out! 543 Remind children not to put anything into their mouth, ears or eyes. Follow the organisation’s guidelines for outdoor work, including making sure there is adequate supervision. If children bring their own resources, check they are suitable and clean. British Science Association Registered Charity No. 212479 and SC039236

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Star level

Collections of one hour challenges recommended for children aged 5-7 years that relate to children’s everyday experiences. Find out more about this level and how to gain a CREST Award on the CREST Star page.

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SuperStar level

Collections of one hour challenges recommended for children aged 7-11 years that realate to broader situations that children are likely to have come across. Find out more about this level and how to gain a CREST Award on the CREST SuperStar page.

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