Pupils up­beat about My Great­est Feat

Central Leader - - News - By Lisa Sloan

It is not un­usual to see Remy Copeland skip­ping, hop­ping and run­ning around the play­ground.

The eight-year-old Mt Eden Nor­mal Pri­mary School pupil is try­ing to take enough steps to com­plete a trip around the coun­try.

He was one of about 300 chil­dren at his school who re­ceived a free pe­dome­ter from triath­lete Hamish Carter on Mon­day.

More than 100,000 chil­dren around the coun­try will re­ceive the pe­dome­ters as part of the My Great­est Feat pro­gramme.

Spon­sored by McDon­ald’s, it aims to en­cour­age chil­dren to be more phys­i­cally ac­tive while learn­ing about the Olympic Games in Bei­jing in Au­gust.

They will spend three weeks try­ing to walk the same dis­tance as a trip around New Zealand and track their progress on­line.

Remy says hav­ing a pe­dome­ter is “so much fun”.

“I’ve been jump­ing around and shak­ing just so I can get dou­ble points,” he says.

“It’s fun to get high steps and beat your friends.”

Stu­dents from 1000 schools around the coun­try have regis- tered for My Great­est Feat so far.

The pro­gramme was launched at Mt Eden Nor­mal this week and will of­fi­cially be­gin on July 21 and run for three weeks lead­ing up to the Olympics.

Stud­ies show prima- ry school age girls need to take about 12,000 steps a day and boys 15,000 steps a day to en­sure they re­main in the healthy body mass in­dex range and pe­dome­ters will help them to keep track.

Carter is the spokes- man for the project.

He says the pro­gramme is a great op­por­tu­nity for chil­dren to get more ac­tive and learn about the Olympics at the same time.

“My love of sport started at my lo­cal school and I’ve never looked back,” he says.

“Any­thing that gets kids re­ally ex­cited about be­ing ac­tive is just fan­tas­tic.”

Man­ag­ing di­rec­tor Mark Hawthorne says My Great­est Feat is an­other way McDon­ald’s is help­ing en­cour­age Kiwi kids to get ac­tive

“This is a great chance to in­spire a new gen­er­a­tion to achieve their goals and en­joy get­ting mov­ing,” he says.

Teacher Susan Bourke is amazed at how en­thu­si­as­tic the chil­dren have been about the pro­gramme.

“It al­lows them to learn about the Olympics in a mean­ing­ful, ex­cit­ing way,” she says

Stu­dent Grace Aitken, 10, is en­joy­ing her new pe­dome­ter.

“It helps you to get bet­ter fit­ness, be more healthy and just have fun,” she says.

For more in­for­ma­tion, visit www.my great­est­feat.org.

Big step: Hamish Carter and chil­dren at Mt Eden Nor­mal Pri­mary School show off their new pe­dome­ters. They are tak­ing part in the My Great­est Feat pro­gramme spon­sored by McDon­ald’s.

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