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Students work with rakau as part of the cultural strand in the Active As project. Photo: SUPPLIED

Active As at Thames High

In 2023 Thames High School was chosen as one of 40 schools nationwide to lead the Active As project, a new project between regional agencies and Sport New Zealand supporting secondary schools to provide quality active recreation and sport opportunities aiming to promote physical activity among students.
The project supports schools to design and implement their own physical activity initiatives.
This year has seen an “Active As Hour” started every Wednesday for year 9 students at Thames High School.
The hour is divided into four strands — culture, environment, performing arts, and physical activities — rotating each term to offer diverse experiences.
Under the culture strand, students explore Māori , Pacifica, and Indian traditions like dance, poi, and rakau.
The environment strand involves river studies, tree planting, and gardening.
Performing arts introduces street theatre skills such as balloon animals and stilt walking, while physical activities focus on outdoor games and challenges.
Tess Watts leads the project as Active As coordinator, ensuring its successful launch.
One year 9 student was overheard saying “it’s the best class of the week”, and another said “I feel like I’m being physical when I’m at Active As hour”.
Thames High School has appointed a lunchtime activities facilitator, with Xavier Brown set to take on the role from term two.
Xavier will organize various activities during breaks, a step we think will continue to promote greater peer interaction among students, a trend staff have already noticed growing during term one following the introduction of the “no phones” policy.
– Supplied by Thames High School