This Thursday Rolleston will be teeming with activity as ninety-nine children take part in AgriKidsNZ, which is part of the New Zealand Young Farmers family, at the Rolleston Community Centre from 1pm.
AgriKidsNZ is a skills-based competition, aimed at primary school aged children, and is run alongside The National Bank Young Farmer Contest at seven Regional Finals around the country from late February until Easter.
Thursday’s event will be attended by 99 children from Sport and Recreation Canterbury (SPARC), Pioneer, Rolleston and College of Education holiday programmes and is a chance for AgriKidsNZ staff to run through a revamped programme for 2011 before the first Regional Final in Helensville on February 26th.
The AgriKidsNZ competition involves teams of four competing in two sections; the first being The Preliminaries which are made up of eight modules that will include general knowledge, animal identification, fencing, first aid and more.
The top seven teams will then proceed through to the exciting, fast paced Race Off where they will have to do everything from milking a model cow to building a farm gate and even filling water balloons with a drenching gun; all while racing against each other in the hope of being the AgriKidsNZ champion team on the day.
Educational Pathways Manager Emma Aker believes the Rolleston day will be a great chance for a group of mostly urban children to learn something new about agriculture.
“While this is predominantly an agricultural competition, filled with events that are made up of common farming practices and knowledge, competitors aren’t required to be from a rural background.”
“The activities require the children to use problem-solving and teamwork skills while challenging and educating them, not just about agriculture and safety issues but also on the importance of healthy competition.”
Emma hopes that plenty of members of the public will come along to support the kids and bring some more atmosphere to the event too.
“It’s a great chance for the local community to come along, see something a little different, support the AgriKids and maybe even learn something new about agriculture too.”