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Aldar Academies hosted the BSME 2015 Junior Games at the New York Abu Dhabi University campus from March 12 to 14.
The BSME Games is running for the 12th year and has become one of the most-awaited games on the calendar of British Schools across the Middle East. Over 300 children from 10 participating schools across the GCC traveled to Abu Dhabi, accompanied by teachers and spectators to compete in a range of sports which include football, basketball, athletics, netball and swimming.
The schools taking part in the event included:-
1. Al Mushrif Primary School, Abu Dhabi
2. The Pearl Primary School,Abu Dhabi
3. Al Yasmina School, Abu Dhabi
4. Al Rabeeh School, Abu Dhabi
5. Doha College, Qatar
6. Kuwait English School,
7. British School Kuwait
8. British International School Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
9. British School Muscat, Oman
10.Cairo English School, Egypt
The Abu Dhabi 2015 BSME Games hoped to highlight that children play sport for different reasons—because it is fun, because the glory of pitting our skills against those of well-matched opponents is exhilarating, because we value our relationships with teammates or teachers, or because we feel the personal accomplishment of pushing our physical and emotional limits. Whatever the reason, true sport—that is, sport played hard, fair, and clean—fosters personal growth and social goods. In sum, sport adds value to our lives which the Aldar Academies hosted BSME Games fostered.
Furthermore the Abu Dhabi 2015 BSME Games highlighted the importance message that children have to be active every day. Sport and physical activity stimulates growth and leads to improved physical and emotional health. Today, research shows that the importance of sport and physical activity in children is stronger than ever. For example, medical researchers have observed that highly active children are less likely to suffer from obesity, diabetes and coronary heart disease later in life. With such prominent social and health issue affecting the UAE this Aldar Academies BSME Games is supported by the public health awareness campaign ‘Diabetes-Knowledge-Action’
Robert Kirkland, event organiser and Head of P.E. at the Aldar Academies Al Mushrif Primary School stated “It is a real honour to host these Games. In addition to the wonderful opportunity for our schools to be involved in this renowned event; to make lasting friendships; to benefit from the remarkable facilities at NYU and to simply play sport at a high level.
There is a strong emotional link with the BSME Games. The Principal of the Pearl School, Alistair Bond,
actually started this event back in 2003 when he was a PE teacher working at an international school in Bahrain. I think it is fair to say that since those first games the event has developed and grown beyond his imagination. He is as delighted as I am that twelve years on we are able to host the event and capitalise on the remarkable facilities and resources available across Aldar Academies and here in Abu Dhabi.
Onto the Abu Dhabi 2015 BSME Games itself.
Despite one or two issues at immigration all 10 schools where present in the impressive NYU gymnasium for the opening ceremony. Egyptian professional triathlete Omar Nour, athlete ambassador at the event encapsulated students, teachers, parents and guests with a remarkable speech that, emphasised the importance of “giving their best”.
The students took his advice seriously, the games serving up some thrilling contests across the weekend. However in line with the competitive nature of the BSME Games there had to be winners and runners up.
Congratulations must go to Doha College who won both the Basketball and Netball.
Al Yasmina won both the Athletics and Swimming and British School of Jeddah won the Football.
All the sporting competitions where played to the highest standard and fair play and sporting etiquette where seen throughout by both student and teachers highlighting the positive values on display.
All five sporting competitions where wonderful spectacles of all that is was great about sport, engaging competition, sportsmanship, victory, defeat and camaraderie amongst the students.
1st Place: Doha College, Qatar
2nd Place: Al Yasmina
3rd Place; British School of Muscat, Oman
Overall it was all smiles for Doha College after being crowned champions of the Under-11 BSME Games over the weekend.
The Qatar-based school accumulated a total of 47 points, having finished first in basketball and netball, as well as runners-up in swimming, athletics and football. UAE’s Al Yasmina finished second with 38 points, while British School of Muscat completed the podium with 34 points.
The closing ceremony marked the end of the three-day competition at New York University Abu Dhabi, which attracted more than 300 students from 10 schools from across the Middle East.
John Tapster, head of primary PE at Doha College, lauded his team’s efforts.
“It’s a fantastic achievement. It wasn’t just about winning, it was about taking part. This is something that will live with them forever,” he said. “I was impressed with their commitment and attitude throughout. They never gave up and have been a real credit to the school. They can be proud of their achievements.”
Organiser Robert Kirkland, head of PE at Al Mushrif primary school, which finished fourth, was delighted with the level of competition.
“It was great to see so many students do so well over the three days,” he said. “The level of competition was very high in all disciplines, which was great to see, and hopefully they can learn from this experience.”
He added: “I would like to thank the National Ambulance, H20 Swim Club, Imperial College London Diabetes Cente, New York University and the 55 staff from Aldar Academies for making this a huge success.”