Three years ago our family moved to New Zealand because Luke’s Dad got a job offer in Wellington. Now in Year 4, Luke was 6 yrs when he first joined Kapakapanui School and our neighbour at the time lent him a scooter to get to school. He became a scooting expert in no time.
When Movin'March came along, I saw some of the stories from other families and spotted the photo competition. So we started taking photos of Luke walking or scootering to school each morning and to our utmost surprise, we won a prize! He was so happy because we’d only been in New Zealand a couple of months and he has been the biggest fan of Movin'March ever since.
Movin'March just gives us such a great opportunity to get our bodies moving every morning and afternoon rather than being dropped at school by car. There are so many things to see on the way if you take time to explore your environment. We pass a nature reserve in the mornings and there are always birds singing in the trees. We love seeing the Tūī flying overhead and hearing their beautiful song.
Most mornings we’ll pass someone walking their dog which is always a highlight (we love dogs). When we don't go through the reserve we walk past the park and if we're early enough there’s time for a quick round on the swings. Every morning is different, even if we take the same route, as there’s always different things to see every day. It was so much fun completing the Movin'March scavenger hunt (PDF 205 KB) . We saw all the things on the map on our short walk to school - things you don't usually think about.
Luke has learnt to be more independent because of his participation in Movin'March. Some mornings I don't even have to walk him all the way to school. He just tells me "It’s fine Mum, I can go on my own from here" and off he goes. He has learned so much about road safety and how to look out for hazards. He’s also much more eager to get going to school in the morning.
Kapakapanui School gives their all to Movin'March. Everyone gets the opportunity to be part of it. It’s amazing to see the older kids helping in the mornings stamping everyone's passports and with all the extra activities during lunch breaks. Parents get regular updates with pictures of what the kids have been up to such as decorating scooters or having a disco on wheels. The teachers really do their utmost to make this a fun time for all the kids.
I think sometimes time just gets away from us and we are always in such a hurry that we forget to slow down and look at the world around us. Movin'March gives us an opportunity to do this. And when you’re walking, biking or scooting you get to see so much more. As a family we have started walking more often and it has already made such a big difference to how we feel, not only physically, but mentally. Being active just helps clear your mind and put so many things into perspective, while at the same time just having fun. We will definitely keep taking part in Movin'March. It brings us so much joy, especially in this time when we all need a little joy.
(Story by Cheryl Heinamann, mother of Luke.)