Race Around Australia (RAA) was added to the NSW Premier’s Sporting Challenge in 2021 as part of the suite of programs available to DoE schools and corporate staff to motivate more students and staff to be 'more active, more often'.
In 2022 RAA will be available to schools and corporate teams to run in Term 3. Schools and corporate teams may choose to run RAA as an alternate to the 10 week Challenge (10wC), but teams can complete RAA in Term 2 and the 10wC in Term 3. Schools can select for which class teams wish to complete RAA or the 10wC.
RAA is a virtual physical activity challenge where teams and schools race side-by-side around the coast of Australia.
Student participants complete short bursts of physical activity across the school day. This could be five minutes of running or walking a set course. In the Staff race, participants can complete a range of physical activity options across the whole week which are then converted to RAA kms. Participants, or the coordinating teacher, log this distance into the RAA website. This distance is then displayed on a map tracking participants (student/staff), teams and the whole school as a larger team, racing a set course around Australia.
When students reach certain locations, they unlock content blogs about that place. Currently this content is aligned with Science, Geography, History and PDHPE curriculum. Participants can also earn personal achievement badges and share their distances with their friends to keep them motivated.
Physical activity options
RAA is a tool to provide students more opportunities to be ‘more active, more often’. RAA has been designed to encourage all students to participate in regular physical activity across the school day by incorporating short bouts of moderate to high intensity in the ‘classroom’. The program actively encourages all teachers to value and implement physical activity as a learning experience and demonstrates how teachers can align movement opportunities with the curriculum.
RAA kms - How is activity tracked?
This can be done in three main ways.
- Distance activities - 1 km of running or walking is 1 RAA km.
- Timed activities - a general rule is that 5 minutes of moderate - vigorous activity (something that makes you huff and puff) is 1 RAA km
- Prescribed activities - these are set activities found in our resources page that have a set RAA km value.
Although we are 'racing around Australia’, it is important to emphasise that it is a team challenge. Students benefit from working together as a team to achieve a goal (travelling further around the coast of Australia) and by living the ethos of ‘more active more often’.
The aim of RAA is to do more activity each week or maintain high levels of activity by comparing distances traveled on the map each week.
School challenge maps
Schools can choose to view different 'challenge maps’. It is important to understand that schools are all different sizes and the level of participation in RAA is the choice of each school team. It may be difficult to know which schools are of similar size, so schools may choose to challenge a 'similar' school.
- School map - this is the default map level. It shows teams within a school racing alongside each other.
- Directorate map- shows schools within the same School Operational Directorate racing alongside each other.
- Top 50 map - shows the Top 50 schools across the whole DoE racing alongside each other.
- Class map - shows individuals in a class racing alongside each other.
Note: Classes who run RAA as a whole class activity and add the same RAA kms to all students in a class may not wish to view this map as it may show all individuals at the same point.
Activ8 your Workplace staff challenge maps are the same as above with the omission of the School map.
RAA school activity guidelines
Schools should be familiar with the RAA guidelines regarding active participation in RAA. Please remember that this is a challenge, not a competition, and the goal is to be ‘more active, more often’. Emphasis should be placed on encouraging regular participation as part of the school day.
RAA activity is tracked differently to 10 week Challenge (10wC) activity. In RAA, activity can only be recorded if it has been done with the class teacher/team manager as part of a structured activity. This can be part of a lesson, an energiser, thinking while moving lesson, or as organised before/after school or lunchtime activity (e.g. morning run club). So long as it is measurable in terms of time at the moderate to vigorous level or there is a distance completed. Whilst activity in the 10wC can include activity done without teacher supervision, in RAA it is not included. Activity done at home/outside of school is not included for RAA.
It is important for our student health and wellbeing that they are able to participate in a range of physical activity opportunities that are fun and enjoyable. Our purposefully designed physical activity resource pack includes safe activity options that have been developed in collaboration with The University of Newcastle. This range of activities ensures student safety and a range of choices for students. We are continually adding to this physical activity resource pack so keep checking back to see what new resources are available.