The Ministry of Education and SEP, the IAAF and the Marshall Islands Athletics Federation have agreed to a Partnership and Cooperation Agreement to develop the Kids’ Athletics program within the Marshall Islands primary schools. Last year, the agreement entered its implementation phase. The MIAF launched a workshop for 30 candidates, in close cooperation with the SEP/MOE. More than half of the participants were head teachers from the outer islands.
The training included some theory but mostly practical sessions, and a specific workshop was been conducted on the way to improve the sports equipment from the local environment. This 2-hour workshop was much appreciated by all the participants. Being aware that the athletic equipment is of some consequence to the development of Kids’ Athletics, this is a way to help them solve the problem of the lack of equipment in their schools. The improved ‘local equipment’ made by the participants was used to organize the KA competitions at the weather station where primary school children were given the opportunity to demonstrate the eight different stations of the program. The newly trained teachers should now start to train PE teachers who will be in charge to roll out the Kids’ Athletics program in all the schools in the RMI. The MIAF and SEP facilitated an activity
The first Kids Athletic Kit arrived last week and plans are already in place to start utilizing the new equipment in Majuro schools. Each school in Majuro will have a chance to keep the kit for their activities for at least two weeks. SEP together with MIAF will ask the IAAF to contribute another kit for the schools in Ebeye later this year.
The Kids’ Athletics event uses a specialized IAAF kit in eight different stations or activities that seek to imitate conventional athletics events. The program is tailored for children between the ages of 8–13. These stations or activities include: Formula One (a hurdle and cross bar run), Cross Hop Target Throwing, Shuttle Relay, Kids’ Javelin Throw, Squat Jumps, Speed Ladder, Pole Long Jump and an endurance run at the end. There are eight different stations then a final endurance run where kids collect candy after each round. The idea is to collect as much candy as possible, which means that the children must continue running.