Stratford Press

Virtual adventure motivates kids

Programme teaches pupils healthy habits

- Alyssa Smith

Nearly 200 Taranaki pupils have joined forces with New Zealand sports stars Ardie Savea, Ameliarann­e Ekenasio, Kane Williamson, and Samantha Charlton to take part in a fun and healthy virtual adventure.

Seven Taranaki Schools — Fitzroy School, Merrilands School, Mokau School, St Joseph’s School (Waitara), TKKM o Tamarongo, Waitara East School, and Westown School — are taking part in the Zespri Young and Healthy Virtual Adventure, aimed to teach pupils healthy habits.

The health and wellbeing programme takes the pupils on a virtual trip around the globe. At the same time, they learn healthy habits such as moving their bodies, eating extra fruit and vegetables, drinking more water, getting a good night’s sleep, and reducing leisure time spent on screens.

Fitzroy School teacher Nina Lobb says 64 pupils from the school are involved in the challenge.

“This is my third time taking

part in the challenge with a class and our other teacher Maree Brown is taking part in the challenge for the first time with her class.”

Nina says the pupils enjoy the challenge.

“Our students say that the challenge is great for motivating them to be active and healthy. I’ve spoken with my class about aiming for 8000-20,000 steps per day. This ensures that it is achievable for each of them but also a challenge for those that are always active as they like to be competitiv­e and beat their friends’ steps.”

The website has great resources to use, she says.

“We have pulled up the mindfulnes­s page and discussed using our five senses to calm ourselves and refresh our thinking. We use the check-in page to reflect on whether we are eating some fruit and vegetables and drinking enough water.”

The class has achieved the first leg of the virtual journey, and Nina says they’ve learned valuable lessons along the way.

“We watched the video about climbing the stairs being great for a huff and puff activity and gelato or ice cream being good for a once or twicea-week treat rather than every day.”

 ?? Photo/ Supplied ?? The challenge teaches pupils healthy habits.
Photo/ Supplied The challenge teaches pupils healthy habits.

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