Fun, exciting, informative and stretching are words that came to mind when I first viewed this interactive problem solving pack. The Hounslow Business Education Partnership (part of the School Curriculum Industry Partnership - SCIP) and Army Careers have produced an excellent, wide ranging materials pack. The aim was to involve a major employer in the locality, the Army, to work with SCIP in planning a curriculum focusing on problem solving through personal development and team building.
The exercises put the user through a decision-making process via maps, a video, CD-Rom and exercises from real front-line situations that the Army faces. Although the pack is part of a recruitment campaign for The Royal Marines it doesn't detract from its main purpose, that of making decisions based on survival scenarios. The video footage and interactive element of the CD-Rom highlight the UN relief work in Bosnia.
The pack can be used either as general subject activity or as a cross curricular project. The original concept was to oblige pupils to work together in small groups, read and un-derstand instructions, produce a plan and present their findings to the remainder of the class. Geography pup-ils will benefit from having to use an unfamiliar format of 1:50,000 map, and the maths element involv-es measurement, proportion and time speeddistance calculations. Operation Provide Comfort should prove stimulating for pupils aged 15 to 18.