A Horowhenua school isn’t afraid of tackling the tough subjects with its on-stage performances.
Levin East School won the national Showquest title last month, the second year in a row the school has won the performing arts competition with an impressive performance. More than 50 children from years 4 to 6 were involved.
Their theme this year was Covid-19 and the development of a vaccine. They looked at how the virus attacked the human body and how the vaccine worked.
Teacher Paula Hirini-Watson said they thought Covid-19 would be a common theme, so decided to take a different approach.
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“We were a little bit nervous about doing Covid-19, thinking everyone would tackle it.
“So we went through a different lens, going through the vaccine route, which is topical and a little bit controversial.”
Despite the controversy about anti-vaccine people refusing to take the vaccine, Hirini-Watson was confident about focusing their performance on it.
“Even in our own community at school we know there’s people that sit on both sides of the fence.
“Levin East School is not a school that ever shies away from hard-hitting topics.”
They highlighted how the community could go back to lockdown without a vaccine.
Topics in previous years include transgender people and the use of plastics.
The group of children started work in term one. They met with teachers to come up with a topic, then started working on choreography, costumes, music and the set.
Some pupils involved in organising the show were Taiaha Isherwood, 10, Anoushka Tohill, 10, Te Rongomai Heretaunga, 10 Capri Bellamy, 11, Blaike Hapeta, 10, Mia-Jane Matakatea, 10, and Ysabella Skerman, 9.
The creative team had to answer questions after the performance and spoke about how telling people to trust the vaccine was an important message.
“It taught us to work together and trust the vaccine and why working together is better,” said Capri.
When the school was told via Facebook about their win, Hirini-Watson said the children were “jumping around screaming and running around celebrating”.