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Welcome to Homezone

Helping parents and carers to build their child’s essential skills at home.
An image of the Eight Essential Skill icons. Listening, Speaking, Problem Solving, Creativity, Staying Positive, Aiming High, Leadership and Teamwork.
Enjoy activities together at a time and pace to suit you and your family.
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Learn more at the Parents & Carers page

Skills Challenges

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More Skills Challenges

Imagine that you are going on a trip to a place that you have never visited.

What information do you need to know to successfully plan the trip and make it as fun as possible?

Make a list of the questions that you need to answer and where you might be able to find the information you need.

Reflection Questions

Getting Started: Where are some of the different places you might find extra information?

Intermediate: How can you come up with lots of possible solutions?

Advanced: Why is it important to consider a range of solutions for problems?

Mastery: How might you choose between different solutions to a complex problem?

Problem Solving

Think of an activity that you enjoy doing. This might be something you do at home or at school.

Imagine that you are a teacher and you need to teach your friend how to complete this activity in a series of steps.

Plan how you would explain the activity clearly and put the steps in a logical order.

How might you use your hand gestures and body language to teach this activity more effectively?

Reflection Questions

Getting Started: How do we know if we are speaking clearly?

Intermediate: As you speak how can put your points into a logical order so you can be easily understood?

Advanced: How can you use tone, expression and gesture to make your speaking engaging?

Mastery: How can you adapt the content of what you are saying, in response to listeners?


Listen to the people around you talking to each other - perhaps your friends or family. Observe the conversation and listen for when someone interrupts.

Extension: Why did they interrupt? Was it for a positive or negative reason? How do you know?

Reflection Questions

Getting Started: How can you make sure you are listening carefully?

Intermediate: What does it mean to summarise what you have heard?

Advanced: Why is summarising or rephrasing what you have heard useful sometimes?

Mastery: How might changing the language (words) used affect how you feel about something?


Think of a time when someone has helped you complete a task.

Write a 'thank you' card to express your appreciation.

You could include:

  • what they helped you with
  • why it was useful
  • how it made completing the task easier or more fun.

Extension: could you suggest a new project to work on together in the future?

Reflection Questions

Getting Started: When do you find it easier (or more difficult) to work with others in a positive way?

Intermediate: Have you helped make decisions with others?

Advanced: How can you encourage others to help out too?

Mastery: What is an 'unhelpful conflict'? How can you avoid this when working with others?


Create a feelings chart to describe how you are feeling each day this week. You can pick the theme of the chart - for example, you could make a feelings weather chart which describes how you feel by linking it to different types of weather (sunny = happy; cloudy = ... ) Pick a theme that makes sense to you.

Try to complete the chart every morning and evening this week. At the end of the week, take a look back and see if there are any patterns to how you have felt this week. Did you always feel the same way every morning? Did this feeling stay with you until the evening or did it change? You could ask a member of your household to do this with you.

Reflection Questions

Getting Started: How can you find out about how others are feeling about something?

Intermediate: How can you find out more about strengths and weaknesses in others?

Advanced: What are good leaders able to do?

Mastery: How do different Leadership styles affect other people?


Pick something that you have completed or been successful at recently. It could be something you did at school or in a club, or something from home like cleaning your room or finishing a book. It can be a big success or something small that you are proud of.

Make an award or certificate for yourself to celebrate your success. Share your success with a family member or friend.

Reflection Questions

Getting Started: How do you know if something is too difficult for you?

Intermediate: Why is it important to be willing to take on new challenges?

Advanced: What resources might you need to achieve your goals?

Mastery: What steps do you need to put in place to make your goals happen?

Aiming High

Think about 3 things you are grateful for today, that brighten your day and make you feel happy. They can be small things or big things.

Extension: Discuss your choices with members of your household and talk about other things that have brightened their day today too.

Reflection Questions

Getting Started: How does this activity make you feel?

Intermediate: How could you use this activity to feel more positive when something goes wrong?

Advanced: How could this help you to look on the bright side of something?

Mastery: How can you manage your emotional response to best support others?

Staying Positive

With a family member or friend, listen to your favourite piece of music. Now each of you create a piece of artwork to describe how the piece of music made you feel?

Show your artwork to each other. Are they similar? Did the piece of music make you both feel the same way? Could you combine them to make one piece of artwork?

Reflection Questions

Getting Started: How can you share what you imagine?

Intermediate: How can you come up with lots of different ideas?

Advanced: How can you combine different ideas to create new ones?

Mastery: How can you help someone else to be creative?

Pick your child's experience level to begin

Getting started

For those right at the start of their journey to begin building essential skills with your support.
The Getting Started stage is suggested for children in early primary school. This stage is also a good place to begin for a child or young person who is new to building their essential skills or wishes to revisit the skill with your support.


For those more confident with essential skills to practise further with you and accelerate learning.
The Intermediate stage is suggested for children in late primary or early secondary school. This stage is also a good place for an older child or young person to continue building their essential skills with your support.


For those using essential skills regularly to work more independently on strengths and areas for improvement.
The Advanced stage is suggested for young people in secondary school. This stage is a good place for a young person to begin building their own essential skills on their own, with help from online tools and resources.


For those looking to independently improve essential skills to prepare for future learning or careers.
The Mastery stage is suggested for young people who are about to leave secondary school or college. This stage is a good place for a young person to continue building their own essential skills on their own, with help from online tools and resources.