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Primary School Inter-House Athletic Meet 2016

The Primary School Annual Inter-House Athletic Meet of St. John’s College was held on Thursday 11th February 2016 at 2.30 p.m. The Chief Guests were the Rev. Jason Selvaraja, Senior Pastor, Assemblies of God of Ceylon and Mrs. Madhumathi Selvaraja, Head Mistress, Valarmathi Pre-School, Kokuvil.

On the said date and exactly at the said time, the Chief Guests, our Principal Rev.N.J.Gnanaponrajah and his wife marched towards the grounds. They were warmly welcomed by the Head Mistress, Sectional Heads and the Teachers.

The Secretary of the Meet Mr.J.G.N.Ariaratnam, Supervisor, Lower Primary, Mrs. M.J.Jeno and the Supervisor, Upper Primary, Mrs.E.I.Thevamithran pinned the rosettes on the guests.

Then the Chief Guest, Principal and Head Mistress stepped onto the stage as the children got ready to perform the March Past. The students who participated in the March Past did their part flawlessly.

 

Next the Chief Guest hoisted the College Flag. After the Athletic Captain’s Oath the Chief Guest declared open the Meet. Events followed one after the other smoothly after the opening ceremony. First was the School Going Race for children below 7 years of age. It was indeed nostalgic to see students hurriedly putting on their uniforms, shouldering their bags and taking their drink bottles as they ran towards the judges who were at the finish line.

Next was the Fruit Picking Race for students in the Un-8 and Un-9 categories. Regular cheers erupted from different corners of the grounds.The Sack Race was next. The Sack Race is a classic game that has been around forever. By jumping and hopping to the finish line, kids learn amazing development skills, disguised in the fun and sometimes hilarity of the game. This race was a huge success! It was greatly enjoyed by both the participants and the spectators.Following the Sack Race were Sprints: 50 m Race for Un-8, 75 m Race for Un-9, 80 m Race for Un-10 and 100 m Race for Un-11.

The athletes went to their sprint start positions and on the command, “On Your Marks, Set, Go,” set off like the wind. At the finishing line, the time keepers watched keenly for the athletes’ torsos to cross the finish line before pressing their stop watches. The ones with quick acceleration, maximum running speed and longer endurance won.

The Rabbit Race for the Un-7 followed. The bunnies bounded forward. Since their rivals were rabbits and not turtles, they didn’t relax but hopped with determination till they reached the finish line. Next, students belonging to the Un-8 age category took part in the Lime & Spoon Race, a type of racing and balancing game, similar to the egg and spoon game, but less messy. Most of the students enjoyed taking part in this game. 80 m Skippingfor Un-10 & U-11 was next.

The children skipped their way to the finishing line, some lagged behind while some were unfortunate enough to kiss the ground. Next was the Gift Race for the youngest kids in the Primary School aged under 7 and 8. There was no winner or loser. Everyone ran towards the line; everyone got a gift; everyone was happy.

No sooner was the Gift Race over, their elder brothers aged Un-10 and U-11 got ready for the 100 m Hurdles. It was exciting to see the

The Sack Race was next. The Sack Race is a classic game that has been around forever. By jumping and hopping to the finish line, kids learn amazing development skills, disguised in the fun and sometimes hilarity of the game. This race was a huge success! It was greatly enjoyed by both the participants and the spectators.

Following the Sack Race were Sprints: 50 m Race for Un-8, 75 m Race for Un-9, 80 m Race for Un-10 and 100 m Race for Un-11.

The athletes went to their sprint start positions and on the command, “On Your Marks, Set, Go,” set off like the wind. At the finishing line, the time keepers watched keenly for the athletes’ torsos to cross the finish line before pressing youngsters clearing a series of upright frames by gracefully jumping over them.

The Farmers’ Race and Ball Passing for athletes aged ten and below were on the heels of Flag Passing and Hoop Race for those under 9.

Following the interval was a Drill Display by the students of the Middle School. The drill display which was a series of rhythmic exercises by the students left the spectators spellbound. It was time for another event involving team work – the relay! The 4 x 100 m Relay for Un-9, 4 x 100 m Relay for Un-10, 4 x 100 m Relay for Un-11, Past Captains’ Relay and Medley Relay for the Un-8,9,10 & 11 took place. Watching the batons change hands was symbolic of traditions, legacy and values being handed down from one generation to the other.

The Principal, the Rev. N.J.Gnanaponrajah presided over the Award Ceremony.

The Plank Walk for Un-11 and Ball Passing for Un-11 preceded the Tug-o-war (Exhibition Pull) between Peto and Handy. With this, the track and field events came to an end.

He invited the Headmistress to the podium. The Headmistress, Mrs. S. Sivapalan, in her address, introduced the Chief Guests.

She thanked all those who were present and everyone who helped to organize the Sports Meet.

Next the Principal presented the Chief Guest with a memento and requested him to share a few words with the participants and spectators. The Chief Guest’s address is given below.

The events took place as scheduled. The scouts did their duties well. They helped the referees and carried the results to the recording shed as and when the results were finalised. Everything went on smoothly. Finally, the Prizes were distributed.

R.Renojan (Un-9) of Johnstone House broke the record for Long Jump (3m 25cm) set by K.Pirakashan in 1988. The new ground record now stands at 3m 29cm. Congratulations to him!

Best Performance – Track Events: K. Janathan – U11 100m – 16.3 sec
Best Performance – Field Events: J.S.Arnold – Cricket Ball Throw – 42m 81cm

Tug-o-war Champions – Peto House

At the end was the most thrilling moment of the Meet - the announcement of the placement of houses. The results are given below.

Champions

Pargiter House

Runners-up

Johnstone House

Third Place

Peto House

Fourth Place

Thompson House

Fifth Place

Handy House

After the distribution of prizes was the three hearty cheers by the Athletic Captain Mas. J.S.Arnold for the Chief Guest and the Athletic Vice Captain Mas. S.Benyhin for the visitors. The Athletic Meet ended peacefully and happily with the staff and children of all houses congratulating the winning house.


Speech Delivered By the Chief Guest, the Rev. Jason Selvaraja, Senior Pastor, Assemblies of God of Ceylon at the Primary School Annual Inter-House Athletic Meet of St. John’s College on 11.02.2016

Principal, the Rev. N. J. Gnanaponrajah, Head Teacher of the Primary School, Staff, Students, Parents, Well-wishers and the Old Boys of St. John’s College, the backbone of this institution.

I felt really honored when you invited me and my dear wife Madhu as the Chief Guests to this event. This prestigious school started by the Rev. Joseph Knight in 1823 has a long history behind it, and it has been and continues to be a much sought-after, excellent school in Jaffna.

My personal attachment to this school began when I was admitted as a student to do my GCE A/L in September 1977 after the racial riots took place in South Sri Lanka.

I am the second generation to come to this College. I hope my future generations too will continue to study in this College.

Primary school events are eagerly awaited events in any school and the Primary School Sports Meet is no exception. Sports plays an important role in every child’s life. Through sports students learn to strive hard, develop team spirit, and improve stamina and fitness.

It is very encouraging to see that events such as this Primary School Sports Meet are held on a regular basis in schools, because all children must be given enough opportunities to experience and learn from these events.

Everyone who takes part cannot be a winner – but everyone can be a participant – and I hope this practice is encouraged here, at St. John’s College, Jaffna.

Parents, too, play an important role in the formation of the child. Parents always want their children to win, at all costs. Children feel uneasy about participating unless they are outstanding and are sure they will win. This is an unhealthy attitude - one that should not be inculcated in young children. Parents and children need to understand that winning is not important but participating is. We parents need to guide our children to be active participants than to coerce them to be winners. We are the footstep our children are going to follow. Right attitudes in life roll the wheels of life forward. Someone said, “Wrong attitude is like a flat tire. You cannot move it, unless you change.” So we all need a change in attitude.

Students, some of you have won races in this athletic meet. Congratulations! But, life’s race is yet to be won. You will have to run with good attitude to win it.”

Self disciplined will take you to great heights in life. If you do no discipline your life, then others will - and that will be hard to bear and accept.

I wish all the Johnians here to become great men in the society – let your life be like a beacon, shining in this dark world.

Thank you.


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