13 students from the Infant and Junior School took up the challenge of archery again in the School Hall. For the current Year Sixes’, it was their last opportunity to take part as they will move on to FICS when the club starts again in the new term and School year.
For just 4 it was their first go and the remainder had either tried once before or are very experienced shooting with both the Falklands Archery Association and the IJS & CE Clubs. Perhaps the most difficult thing to identify in young archers is their eye dominance as they get to grips with all the things they need to do in order to shoot consistently namely - is my feet right, and am I holding the bow correctly, gripping the string just right, am I aiming with the correct eye, have I anchored correctly are just a few of the things they have to remember when shooting an arrow. All being well it ends up in the centre of the target and for many it did. Some find that all of their arrows end up on one side of the target and it necessitates changing them from right hand archery to left. Jose Echeverria was just such a young man but having done so, doubled his score almost right away.
I guess if you asked any of these young archers what is the best part of archery, it would be the balloon popping. At the end of each one hour session, inflated balloons are attached to the targets. The experienced archers get a small one and less experienced get larger ones. This is a hotly contested challenge to see who can pop their balloon with the least arrows. A fun activity that develops their skills and strength, tired arms are forgotten in order to pop the balloons and the look of satisfaction on their faces having popped a balloon is undeniable.
On the seventh and final week, all students are graded they are largely left on their own to shoot the target and putting all they have learned to the test. Their grades are based on the average arrow score, scoring between a 3-4 on average per arrow gets you a black certificate, 5 -6 a blue. At the end of the grading, the results were thus:-
Name Certificate Total Scored Jamie Webb Black 68 Joseff Murphy Black 84 Priya Suppiah Black 87 Jose Echeverria Black 96 Olivia Drew Black 135 Tyrese Ceballos Black 141 Joshua Socodo-Reid Blue 183 Kirsty Lewis Blue 199 Lane McKay Blue 208 Katalina Clarke Red 210 Caitlin Fowler Gold 271 Connor McLeod Gold 273
Certificates and target faces were awarded to all during assembly in front of the whole School.
The 2 most experienced archers shot before the rest and this proved a very close match. Connor scored 58 to Caitlin’s 53 in the first end of 6 arrows. Caitlin came back and took the next 55 to Connor’s 51 with Connor having dropped one arrow into the five scoring zone. Both scored 52 on the next end, Caitlin then tied the score by beating Connor by one point to score 56 to Connor’s 55 in the next end. Connor then scored an all gold end, all 6 arrows in the gold, 3 x 10’s and 3 x 9’s giving him a score of 57, Caitlin was not letting go that easy and scored, 2 x 10’s , 3 x 9’s and an 8 to score 55. Connor scored the highest total by just 2 points, a score of 273 to Caitlin’s 271. They both did incredibly well as did all of the other students.
The IJS & CE Club will start again in the new School year, so Years 5 & 6 watch out for those letters if you would like to take part.
A big thank you to Alan Fowler who helped with every session and also to Sally Owen for your assistance. Both are members of the Falkland Archery Association.