Munno Para Primary School (MPSS) is a Reception to grade 7 school situated in Adelaide’s northern suburbs. Adelaide is in the Australian state of South Australia. The school is situated approximately 35kms (22 mi) from Adelaide CBD (the capital city) and around 6 kms (4mi) from Elizabeth City Centre. There are 343 students including 56 Students with disabilities as well as a Language Communication class. MPPS has 34 Aboriginal/Torres Strait Islander students. There are 13 EALD (English is not their first language) families within the school. Munno Para PS has 16 classes, including the language class. MPPS is a category 2 school of disadvantage with 60% of families on school card. For those who are unfamiliar, this means that it is in an extremely low-income area where 60% of the families receive assistance in purchasing items needed for school. MPPS is geographically isolated from the growth in the Playford Alive and Blakes Crossing (nearby newer subdivisions) areas, which is continuing to grow. There are no local services in the area.
For International Games Day in 2016, the library wanted to provide some fun and stimulating experiences in a safe environment. We wanted to participate in an activity that showed students and staff in our school that they could be part of a fun, worldwide activity. We began by showing a video clip on the large TV in the library. The video incorporated the International Games Day logo, the world, Australia and local maps indicating the locations of other International Games Day event locations, to show that we were part of a larger event. We extended the games over the entire week (which we plan to do this year also).
We provided a variety of games including basic local games, typical games for the school aged children, games that are part of the library collection, and some games that the students may have never seen or played before. (Chinese checkers, Rush Hour, etc.) A few matching games were designed that incorporated the local area and staff to get everyone excited about participating. One of the more popular games was a puzzle made up of the leadership team (principals and counsellor) photos. We also encouraged classes to run games in their rooms by providing a list of easy games they can use with their children without much preparation. We stayed away from computer and electronic games so the students would work together rather than individually interacting with electronics.
The library is large and open, so the games were spread over the whole library including on the wall, tables, and floors (we would also love to spread out into the paved area right outside our library this year). The whole week was extremely fun and provided students with activities outside the classroom and off the computers. There was a wide interest in games over the week, and the library had many visitors to the school over lunch and during recess just to play the games. There were even students who wanted to play during their regular class time. This excitement led some classes to extend their library time during this week in order to play the games.
This year, we hope to find some more international and older games to enhance our event. We plan to have a large jigsaw puzzle and other table games. We have already acquired a wooden Labyrinth, wooden Quoits, and hope to find some more international games that the students have not experienced before.
Thank you for providing this opportunity. We look forward to another exciting event in our library.
My name is Lisa Preston and I am the librarian at Munno Para Primary School, a northern suburb of Adelaide Australia. I have been at this school for a little over 2 years, but I have recently just taken over being the library manager. In the library, I try to involve the children and the staff by providing fun, yet educational, events in the library. This has had a positive effect on the usage of the library. The students look forward to events such as International Games Week but are also sad that it only lasts one week.