Portfolio of Kimberly Johans

A collection of articles created during my stint as a journalist at The Macau Daily Times

Dodgeball tourney a time for serious fun

Posted by Kimberly on October 7, 2007

By Kimberly Johans
Published in The Macau Daily Times
October 7, 2007, page 2 (409 words)

The International School of Macau held a dodgeball tournament yesterday as part of an initiative called “Community Days” where 150 students participated, along with parents and teachers.
“We had everyone from the community come, not just western children but from Macau as well,” said Mr Stephen Bolton, the event’s co-organiser.
This was the first year elementary students participated in the tournament which takes place four times a year.
“We just wanted to create an opportunity for children to come together more than the actual results [of the matches]. Although we put it down as a competition, it was very relaxed,” he said, adding that each elementary child also received a red ribbon for participation.
“Last year was about bringing in high school children. This year was elementary, so next year we’re going to bring in kindergarten children in January or March,” said Mr Bolton.
Both parents and teachers offered advice and comments on what they felt would work to improve the initiatives.
The day was split into two halves, with elementary children in the first half and those in years 7 to 11 playing in the second half.
“This [the second half] was a fight-to-the-death competition. They [the students] take it seriously,” he said, adding that they play against both a parent and staff team, with Mr Bolton himself offering commentary.
The teacher’s won the match although it seemed to be heading in the opposite direction for several crucial minutes.
This year also saw the formation of an extra-curricular committee and as such, a teacher from every class joined in the tournament. Parents from the school’s Parents’ Association also joined in by supplying food and beverages.
The idea for the dodgeball tournament began earlier this year with a team now formed for each year and the school agrees that it has gone a long way to create and foster staff, student and parents’ community spirits.
“You see your teachers in a different light. Even with Macau being such a small place everyone is so transient so it’s hard to get things going,” said Mr Bolton who added that this sort of initiative “helps to allow people to feel part of the community.”
The school’s next tournament will occur next January, although the sport of choice has yet to be confirmed. Before that, there will be having their annual walkathon which also raises money for charity as well as the school itself, in terms of new equipment and field trips.

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