Today was the sixth grade (floor) volleyball tournament here at Singa Elementary School. My 6-7 and 6-1 classes made the finals, so my afternoon class with 6-1 was canceled. And I went to the “auditorium” to watch the epic match.
Floor volleyball, or at least that’s what I’m calling it, is an odd combination of tennis and volleyball. The auditorium is standard room height and a volleyball net is set up, so it’s not high enough to be a volleyball net and it’s not low enough to be a tennis net. Instead of serving volleyball style, you grannyshot the volleyball over the net from the front row. The ball can bounce once before you hit it, usually volleyball style, and you have three chances to hit it over, but you can’t hit the ball twice in a row. When you are returning the ball, if it hits the ceiling or the net, it’s out of bounds. Which was difficult for the students because their instincts was to hit the ball high, to block shots at the net, and to spike the ball, but of course, all of these were considered outs by the p.e. teacher.
In the class out rounds, the first team to 11 wins. For the championship round, the winner of two out of three sets, each set is fifteen points, wins the championship.
In Korean schools, the kids wear in-school slippers, these white slip-on shoes with seemingly zero traction, ones edged with sky blue are for boys and the ones lines with pink are for girls. I’m amazed that there hasn’t been too many injuries with the way that the kids run around the school with those shoes on. During the floor volleyball game, there was only one fall down moment and the student was more upset with missing the shot than about falling down or being hurt.
It was interesting to me as well, to see students that are usually shy in English class, come alive during the game. And to see students who are active and participatory in class become quiet and stand-offish during the game.
Saddly 6-1 won both the mixed floor volleyball game and the girls game. But both classes had fun and enjoyed their extra hour of p.e.