Once again, Year 9s had the fun of participating in the UCC Amazing Race, an afternoon of team challenges modelled on the popular TV show.
Pre-pandemic, the annual event was held at the College's Norval Outdoor School. Postponed last year, it took place in modified form on the Deer Park campus on Sept. 17.
"It was a hot, humid day, but the boys had a blast," says Brent Evans, director of Norval Outdoor School.
Evans and his Norval team, who have been redeployed to Toronto, spent time this summer planning the logistics of holding the event on the main campus. Their primary goal, in addition to making the afternoon enjoyable, was to give the students a chance to reconnect in person after so much virtual learning last year.
They created 20 challenges, laid out with a start, three loops of six challenges apiece and a final challenge that determined the winners. The challenges included all kinds of activities, tapping into problem-solving skills, math and language skills and technical proficiency. There was poker with giant poker cards, catapult building and "Stick-ionary." The six-person teams had to jump in unison and roll down hills as they worked their way around the loops.
Evans and the Norval staff each tended to a loop, and, just as in the show, they introduced each challenge to the teams, either verbally or on a recorded video that team members accessed via a QR code. When a team completed a challenge, they took a video for proof and brought it to one of the staff. Staff marked off each completed challenge so that both they and the students could keep track of where a team had been and the challenges they still needed to complete. Only the two winning teams completed all of the challenges in the time allotted.
Says Evans, "Each team had a numbered lock and the keys matching the locks were scattered around the field. When they found their key, they inserted it in the lock and received their first clue. Once they got started, I knew it would be a good afternoon.
“The students were really excited and the teachers were happy to see them engaging with each other.”
The two winning teams, Mowbray’s and Bremner’s, received championship T-shirts, which will undoubtedly be worn with pride. After all, who doesn’t love to win a race?