Throwing, jumping, catching, kicking. Since 2011 Sport Bay of Plenty’s GO4it programme has helped thousands of primary school students develop the fundamental movement skills that enable them to be active for life.
Funded by TECT, the programme is closely linked to the New Zealand Health and Physical Education Curriculum for Years 1 to 6. GO4it educators visit participating Western Bay of Plenty schools to deliver fun physical games and activities during P.E. class time and help teachers with professional development opportunities in physical education.
GO4it Keeps Kids Moving
Sport Bay of Plenty fundamentals lead Sandy Sheterline says the activities are designed to help kids aged 5 to 10 become confident with a range of different movements and physical skills.
“We start with skills such as throwing and catching, and move on to things like striking and playing with large and small balls. By Years 5 and 6 we’re playing multiple sports such as hockey, tennis, Tapu Ae and cricket to help students develop sport and specialised movement skills”.
“Developing these skills early can have lifelong impacts,” says Sandy.
“If we don’t have the confidence to run, jump, throw or catch then we’re less likely to play sport or participate in active recreation as we grow older. And the more negative physical activity experiences we have, particularly when young, then the less motivated we are to be active.”
Building Skills to be Active for Life
Merivale School joined the GO4it programme in 2019, and teacher Shirrallee Hohaia says the programme has also helped her students in the classroom.
“The regular physical activity has seen students in my class become more engaged and actively listening to and following instructions. There’s also opportunities for students to take risks, communicate and take turns – skills that are necessary in life.”
GO4it has also helped Shirralee become more confident at teaching physical education, and she continues to use the warm up and practice activities the kids learnt during their GO4it sessions, as well as the unit plans provided to all teachers.
For Sandy and the team of GO4it educators, the ultimate reward is seeing kids have fun and grow in confidence.
“We all know that physical activity at any age can have huge benefits for our physical and mental wellbeing, so it’s great to see these kids enjoying themselves and starting out on the right foot.”
To learn more about the GO4it programme, visit www.sportbop.co.nz/school-sport/primaryintermediate-schools/go4it/.