Tue, May 31, 2011
China > Mainland > Int''l Children''s Day celebrated

Chinese premier calls for sports activities for children

2011-05-31 11:57:00 GMT2011-05-31 19:57:00(Beijing Time)  Xinhua English

Premier Wen Jiabao (C) is seen during a warm-up activity at a PE class in Shibalidian primary school in Chaoyang district, Beijing, May 31, 2011. Wen pays a visit to the school Tuesday, where he joined students in a basketball game and encouraged children to stay healthy by participating in sports and other physical activities. [Photo/Xinhua]

Premier Wen Jiabao (R2) makes a layup during a basketball game at a PE class in Shibalidian primary school in Chaoyang district, Beijing, May 31, 2011. [Photo/Xinhua]

BEIJING, May 31 (Xinhua) -- Premier Wen Jiabao joined a basketball training session with a group of pupils Tuesday in Beijing, encouraging Chinese children to keep themselves healthy by participating in sports and other physical activities.

Soon after arriving at the Shibalidian Primary School in Beijing's Chaoyang District on Tuesday morning, Wen took part in a 40-minute basketball training session with 37 sixth-graders.

Following the instruction of teacher Zhang Tao, Wen learnt how to dribble and control the ball. A successful jump shot won him a big round of applause from the pupils.

Wen was also invited to play in a basketball match between two three-person teams of mainly sixth-graders.

Wen told the players that he was "very happy" to join them, saying that building a strong and healthy body would help them in their studies.

"Only when children are healthy, can the country have a good future," Wen said. "We must keep a healthy body in order to better serve the people."

The Shibalidian Primary School has a total of 756 students, most of whom are from rural households or belong to families of migrant workers.

While delivering a government work report on March 5 at the fourth session of the 11th National People's Congress, the country's top legislature, Wen said that primary school students should engage in at least one hour of physical activity every day.

On March 8, Wen promised that he would attend a physical education class with students following a request made by Yang Yang, a legislator and world short-track speed skating champion, during the NPC session.

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