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In Our Backyard

Learning with Sport in schools and kura

Sport NZ is leading an educational project with a difference for schools and kura called ‘In Our Backyard’. In partnership with the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE), the Ministry of Education, and four National Sports Organisations, Yachting New Zealand, New Zealand Cricket, New Zealand Rugby, and New Zealand Football, new opportunities are being developed for ākonga (students) to learn with sport as New Zealand hosts a series of major sporting events.

The project complements the Healthy Active Learning initiative, a collaboration between Sport NZ and the Ministries of Health and Education to improve the wellbeing of ākonga through healthy eating and drinking and quality physical activity.

In Our Backyard aims to support schools and kura, sporting organisations and local communities to work together in a collaborative way, engaging ākonga in new, different and innovative ways to help them learn through sport. In the process, this will create a legacy from hosting major sporting events in our country that has real value for schools, kura and communities beyond the actual events.

Sport NZ's Learning with Sport framework

The framework guides National Sports Organisations, schools and kura in the use of a Service Design process to co-create, test, pilot and ultimately implement new ways of engaging with each other.

It also guides National Sports Organisations, schools and kura through a Resource Design process so that they establish quality learning experiences, that are aligned to the Ministry of Education's 'Understand-Know-Do' framing for curriculum design, and that support Sport NZ's aspirations for tamariki and rangatahi.

The framework uses examples from Yachting NZ and NZ Rugby to explain how Service Design and Resource Design processes can be used to support National Sports Organisations to change how clubs and regional bodies engage with schools and kura.

Watch the videos and use the resources to step you through the processes, and if you have any questions or need help at any stage please contact

Learning with sport topics
Girl hula hooping on basketball court
Kick-started with a desire for change

In Our Backyard has its beginnings in a shared ambition to ensure quality experiences for our ākonga. National Sports Organisations, came together with Sport NZ and Physical Education New Zealand to work out how to deliver better education programmes aligned to their major events.

Find out more about how In Our Backyard has progressed.

If you require an accessible version of any content on the site please contact us and we will be happy to assist.

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