Youngsters create a playground
Students at Waitakere Primary School have toiled for 12 months so they can play.
The 26 children in room 7 have designed and built a playground outside their class.
Painstaking planning by the 7 to 9-year-olds and community help has seen the new structure open for action.The year 3 and 4 pupils learned a playground had earlier been planned for the blank area of grass outside their classroom but there was no one to build it.
So they took on the challenge for their technological inquiry and aptly named their design The Challenger.
Teacher Jaime Marinkovich says the children planned the whole project, wrote to the community appealing for donations and raised $450 from their bake sale at school.
"They love playing on it," she says. "They love that they built it for the other kids in the school so it is quite special." The PTA funded most of the playground which cost far less than their budget because of help from the community.
"We had a $10,000 budget but it cost about $2000 all up because of all the donations," Miss Marinkovich says.
Builder Glenn Mikkelsen is the father of twin sisters Amber and Brooke, 9, in her class.
He spent many hours during weekends and after work helping to build the playground of natural materials.
The children ran two working bees and did as much of the building as they could, including laying the weed mat.
They were surprised by how difficult it was but team work paid off.
After a long, hard day their arms and backs were aching but the ground was ready for action, Miss Marinkovich says.
The students are "super proud" of their achievements and hope the rest of the school enjoys playing on it as much as they do.