YINCHUAN, Dec.1 (Xinhua) -- More and more science and technology sports are being introduced into rural primary schools in northwest China's Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region, in a bid to at least partially drag students' attention away from electronics and online games and ignite their enthusiasm for sports.
Guo Ruping, an 11-year-old girl at Xinmin Primary School of Dawukou district, Shizuishan, is a big fan of paper planes.
"I love playing with paper planes. I've met lots of friends through this activity, and both my own hands-on skills and my ability to work with a team have improved," said Guo.
Although Xinmin is a rural school, all its students, around 500, have been given the chance to take part in science and technology sports, such as paper planes, model planes and model ship building.
"An assigned teacher will guide these students and they also have special classes for Sci-tech activities," said Tian Hongmei, vice-headmaster of Xinmin Primary School.
"In the battle against internet games and electronic products, Sci-tech sports are a great help," she added.
According to the education bureau of Dawukou, all of the 32 elementary schools offer students SciTech sports, including seven rural schools. A total of 200,000 yuan (about 30,000 U.S. dollars) is spent on the activities each year by the education authorities.
In order to better organize these activities, the education bureau also tried to get donations from companies in the field.
In addition, they are taking steps to improve the participation rate by holding city-wide and regional competitions.
In October, a Ningxia sci-tech sports contest was hold at Dawukou. Around 1,200 students from all over Ningxia competed in 42 activities, including paper plane, model ship building, and aquatic football.
"This is my first time to watch the model plane competition. It's very interesting. I will more support my son to take part in it in the future," said Wang Xiqiang, parent of a contestant, adding that his son in grade two had learned a lot through this activity and worked so hard on it that he barely had any time to play internet games.
"It's never too early to open sci-tech sports classes. We believe that awareness of sci-tech and enthusiasm for sports will be ignited among our students," said Zhao Hui, director of the Dawukou education bereau.