Over and under, over and under sixteen thousand times

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Over and under, over and under sixteen thousand times. This was the Regent’s Primary School’s attempt at securing a place in the Guinness Book of World Records.

On Thursday May 3rd, 2012, 125 primary school children ranging in age from 8 to 11 attempted to break the Guinness World Record for the world’s largest game of Tunnel Ball.

The line of children playing tunnel ball stretches to the horizon.The line of children playing tunnel ball stretches to the horizon.

The record attempt day was only a small part of the whole process. 23 children from a number of different age groups took responsibility for the organising of the event, which included contacting media outlets, promoting the event around school and preparing the location for the event.

Mind, a year 5 student who took part and helped organise the attempt said, “I never knew how much hard work it took to organise an event on this scale; everyone involved should be very proud.”

Regent’s Primary were attempting to beat the previous record, set in 2008 by St Columba School in Australia, of 120 children.

No, it’s not Songkran; it’s a teacher making sure the students don’t overheat.No, it’s not Songkran; it’s a teacher making sure the students don’t overheat.

The school reached out to local businesses and companies to help make the event a success. The Pullman Hotel, Pattaya, continued to support the area’s local children with a very generous donation of drinks in order to help combat the heat and ensure that the children were hydrated throughout their attempt, which lasted well over 6 hours.

The whole event was a part of the Regent’s Primary’s ‘Round Square Week’, where children throughout the school have an opportunity to challenge themselves and develop life skills linked to the 6 Round Square IDEALS.

Tunnel ball “athletes” anxiously watch as the ball makes it way towards them.Tunnel ball “athletes” anxiously watch as the ball makes it way towards them.

One of the teachers involved in leading the event, Colm Rowan, claimed the event was not only beneficial to the children organising it but everyone who was connected with the school: “Adults and children must have high expectations of what they can achieve within life and within school. Challenging the children to break a World Record, whether they are successful or not, will show that with a combination of determination and hard work any goal can be attained. Only those who reach for the stars will eventually become one.”

Once it reaches the end, a youngster makes a mad dash back to the front of the line.Once it reaches the end, a youngster makes a mad dash back to the front of the line.

Although the game is a playground favourite, to enter the Guinness Book of World Records a strict procedure must be followed to prove the event was successful. The school also needed to have individuals from the local community present to verify the attempt had been successful. The pupils and staff at the Regent’s will have to wait for up to 8 weeks until they find out whether or not the attempt has been successful and whether they can claim their place in the history of World Records.

Hip, hip, hooray!  We did it!Hip, hip, hooray!  We did it!