Primary school pupils vote to take on the Daily Mile

Coten End Primary School will be taking on the Daily Mile following a democratic vote in April as part of Warwickshire’s Year of Wellbeing.

The conscientious youngsters held a whole-school debate on whether to introduce a new initiative promoting exercise to their curriculum.

The debate took place during assembly time and was attended by a number of special guest speakers as well as the pupils, who range from Year 1 to Year 6. The subject up for debate was whether the school should introduce The Daily Mile initiative as a way to increase physical activity, or if they should choose a different way to improve activity levels.

The Daily Mile is a popular, free initiative which promotes physical activity. Each day, children run or jog at their own pace for 15 minutes (approximately 1 mile) in the fresh air with their friends. The initiative is being promoted as part of the Coventry and Warwickshire Year of Wellbeing, which includes a pledge to increase physical activity levels in primary schools and encourage everyone to feel good and function well.

After introductory talks from a teacher, Myton School’s public speaking society and a representative from WCC’s Change Makers initiative- which helps families to make healthier lifestyle choices- the pupils were led in a short aerobic warm-up by PE teachers before the debate began.

A child from each year group presented arguments for and against The Daily Mile before returning to their classrooms to vote on whether to take it up or adopt an alternative way of increasing activity levels.

The school voted to participate in the Daily Mile starting from their Summer Term, which began after the Easter holidays in April.

Mark Ryder, Warwickshire County Council’s Strategic Director for Communities, said: “This is a fantastic initiative and I am sure that pupils at Coten End will gain much from having debated and decided on how they will increase physical activity. Learning about the benefits of exercise by engaging in a debate and following this up with action is a fantastically creative approach. Well done to everyone involved.”

Rosie Chenault, Curriculum Leader at Coten End Primary School, said: “We were extremely proud of the mature approach our children took when making this important decision for Coten End. They all did a lot of research into The Daily Mile initiative, and other physical activities we could implement, and thought carefully about the implications for our school. Not only have our children gained a deeper understanding of the undeniable benefits of increasing activity levels, they have also gained valuable experience of a real-life democratic process. We look forward to many more debates in the future.”

For more information on the Year of Wellbeing please visit https://www.bettercarecovwarks.org.uk/year-of-wellbeing-2019/


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