The Post Primary Teachers Association says the character traits developed by a novel form of homework are just what is needed for success at secondary school.
About 100 schools have adopted the challenges programme created by Windsor School in Christchurch.
Academic homework is kept to a minimum, with most time spent on things like playing an instrument or cooking a meal.
Critics say formal homework is needed to instill good study habits ahead of secondary school.
But PPTA president Kate Gainsford says anything done at a young age that requires perseverance, resilience and independence is beneficial to prepare for secondary school.