Gairloch High pupil invents “volleydodge” and wins £1,000 for school

Gairloch High School young ambassador Sara Johnston was recently crowned runner-up in a National Obesity Awareness Week competition, winning £1,000 funding to go towards school sports equipment.

Gairloch Active Schools coordinator Martin Godwin challenged the young ambassadors to design a new sport or physical activity and enter the national competition. With only a few days before the competition deadline, Sara decided to adapt one of the local primary class games to enter the competition.

Sara pictured with pupils at Gairloch Primary School

Sara pictured with pupils at Gairloch Primary School

Strav McDonagh’s class at Gairloch primary have various games that they have developed through mixing different sports and activities. This method allows all the pupils to become part of the activities, bringing their ideas to the table and then building strategies to be successful once the activity is set up.

The game that stuck out for Sara was a mix of volleyball and dodgeball and once some small adaptions were made to the activity “volleydodge” was born. Sara’s entry impressed the judges and Sara was announced as the competitions runner-up.

She attended the NOAW prize giving ceremony at the Olympic Park, London on Thursday 15th January. The competition was sponsored by Disney and Sara not only left the prize-giving with a medal and certificate to acknowledge her achievements, she received some Disney goodies as well.

While in London Sara met Rachel Laybourne, a Team GB volleyball player at London 2012, and spent the afternoon with her trying out different games and encouraging participants

While in London Sara met Rachel Laybourne, a Team GB volleyball player at London 2012, and spent the afternoon with her trying out different games and encouraging participants

The young ambassadors will now liaise with the Gairloch High School PE staff, Active Schools and their fellow pupils in order to decide what equipment will be purchased.

The funding will be shared with Mr McDonagh’s class at Gairloch Primary School and his class has been invited to present ideas on the equipment they would like to see purchased.