Local teenagers have received a reminder about the things that really matter – and that doesn’t include Facebook or mobile phones.
Mt Albert Grammar headmaster Patrick Drumm notes in the school newsletter that decent weather has allowed junior students “the luxury of enjoying many activities and learning experiences outside the classroom” as part of the year-long junior school inter-form class competition (pictured).
“The school fields have been alive with young people involved in games and simply enjoying each other’s company,” he says. “…It’s been great to see mobile phones being left in the bags in favour of rugby, cricket and footballs!
“Seeing such positive interactions between our students at this time of the year reinforces the need we all have to form healthy friendships. That need will always be better met through ‘face to face’ rather than ‘Facebook’ interactions.”
Mr Drumm says he is a bit dismissive when people are described as being a “friend on Facebook” – because real friends make the effort to meet and connect in person as opposed to relying on social media.
“It’s a good message to reinforce with our students as the holidays approach,” he says. “Don’t be fooled by how many ‘friends’ and ‘likes’ you have on social media. Virtual friends don’t count!
“True friends make the effort to meet in person to share a movie or a meal, and just be there to rub shoulders with each other through life’s ups and downs.”
Mr Drumm urges students to make the holiday break an active one – “leave the mobile phone behind and be a real friend rather than a virtual one”.
The class competition includes both academic and sporting challenges, and aims to help junior students settle into high school life and get to know each other and the school, while having a go at new skills and games. In 2017, challenges included quizzes, volleyball, ultimate vortex, cross country, a rowing-machine challenge, tug of war, basketball, and two art competitions.