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The Kronosaurus Korner 2016 School Challenge: overview



The Kronosaurus Korner School Challenge is an annual event sponsored and administered by Kronosaurus Korner, Australia’s premier marine fossil museum. The museum is located in the outback town of Richmond, Queensland.  The museum is situated where once there had been a shallow inland sea. This ancient seabed is the source of the museum’s amazing, and growing, internationally recognized fossil collection.


A national mathematics / science school challenge with a palaeontology flavour is a natural fit with Kronosaurus Korner’s educational mandate.


A Brief Description of the Challenge

•Challenge Tasks: allow for a wide range of responses; encourage inquiry, research, problem solving and discussion; they are ‘rich’ tasks


•Participants: teams of 3-5 students


•Levels:  three team levels, Gr 5/6, Gr7 and Gr8/9


•Who Can Participate?: any number of teams may participate in a school but only one team’s response per level to be submitted to judges at KK


•Materials Provided: a copy of the Challenge tasks, team’s self-assessment form, teacher’s team-assessment form and  KK judge’s assessment form will be provided to school contact teachers on request; e-mail request


•Starting Date: determined by each participating school; must begin before the end of October 2016.


•Completion Date: 2 weeks after school-selected starting date


• One Challenge: the same Challenge tasks are assigned to all 3 levels; like sports, challenges are designed to be engaged at varying levels of sophistication


•Curricular Prerequisites: current working knowledge of team members; focus on mathematics, science, communication and problem solving


•Team Responsibilities: develop plans and strategies for engaging the Challenge; (may) seek information and feedback from others; review all three assessment rubrics at the start of the Challenge to help shape team action; create and self-assess team’s response within the 2 week time limit


•Role of Teacher: act as museum contact; facilitate the activities of participating team(s); help teams to manage their time; assess each team using supplied assessment rubric; submit one team response per participating level along with completed teacher and team assessment forms


•Role of Judges at KK: use judge’s rubric to assess each submission; return assessment totals along with positive and constructive feedback to each participating school; identify teams performing ‘with distinction’ and select overall level winners in November


•Ranking of Participants: teams are not ranked; schools are not ranked


•Recognition: certificates of participation (and participation ‘with distinction’ ) and overall winning team at each level available for download; overall winners receive KK t-shirts


•Cost: free



Most competitions ask students to work in isolation, in a hurried manner, providing short answers to a series of (subject-based) disconnected questions. Such competitions provide students with little opportunity to plan, inquire, work collaboratively, problem solve, carry out an investigation, experiment, or edit and self-assess their responses.  


The Kronosaurus Korner School Challenge has been created to allow students to engage tasks that provide just such opportunities.


Both students and teachers participating in the pilot 2015 Challenge tell us that they enjoyed the experience and thought it worthwhile. We saw this in the imagination, creativity, care and effort these students invested in their responses.


The best way to check out the ‘KK’ School Challenge is by having your students try the 2015 pilot task. Please note that teams participating in the pilot were allowed only 1 week (rather than 2 weeks that will be allowed in 2016) to complete their responses. You may download the 2015 pilot Challenge and the associated assessment rubrics at the museum’s website:   


If you have further questions about the 2016 CHALLENGE, e-mail


For more information download the 2015 (Pilot) CHALLENGE.