A school in Dorset is introducing Knob throwing into its curriculum, following pupils’ disappointment at the cancellation of Knobfest 2022.
Knobfest, a previously annual competition to see how far Dorset’s tough biscuits could be thrown, has again been canceled due to overcrowding concerns.
Although organizers want Knobfest to get bigger and better, the 2022 competition is getting too big for the current setup, but for a school in Dorchester it was one too many disappointments.
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Prince of Wales School is now adding button throwing to its curriculum after the festival was canceled for the third consecutive year.
Button Throwing Curriculum
Dorset Live spoke to Prince of Wales School Principal Mr Gary Spracklen to understand the educational context of the button throwing lessons: “Well I’m sure a lot of people will be familiar, but traditionally , every year Dorset hold their own button throwing competition as part of their Button Throwing Festival and for many of our children they look forward to this event, which is unfortunately postponed for the third time in a row this year.
For three years the competition was postponed due to Covid restrictions, and now, the year students hoped the event would return, it has been stopped as it has become too popular.
After seeing many children at The Prince of Wales school disappointed by the cancellation, Mr Spracklen decided to step in “So we thought well, why not bring it here at Prince of Wales school and integrate it into the program to throw under the arm as part of our work units through key stage 1 and key stage 2, so we thought, instead of throwing a cricket ball or a tennis ball , why not throw a button cookie?
“We’re going to use our athletic trainer, Mr. Treble, from Steve Treble Sports to teach the kids how to throw the button cookies as far as possible, and we’re going to try and break that world record from 2012 which was 29.4 meters. or 96 feet.
“We’re going to do a training in PE class and then after school on Friday April 29th which is the last night before the button festival takes place this weekend. We’re going to open after school for families to come and try button throwing with their children on the school grounds. We’re going to mark out a button throwing court. We’re going to get everyone involved.
A Knob throwing league?
The school’s button-throwing event will be restricted to families of school children, but Mr Spracken encourages others to get involved.
“We encourage other schools to participate. There’s no reason why they can’t have their own button-throwing festival. And maybe we could organize matches against those schools as well.
“I think of some of our 4 year olds – it’s something they remember doing when they were at the reception. But they didn’t get a chance to do it and have since passed that number years now. And they were just thinking about how it is, it’s sad. It’s not just the button-throwing festival. There are other things that children have missed because of the pandemic and we’re trying to make up for lost time on that kind of stuff.
Mr Spracken believes the introduction of apple throwing into the program is a key way to preserve this ‘Dorset tradition’. Excited about the sport to come, he added “You know, button cookies originated sometime before 1860 when the Moores family started baking in West Dorset, and it’s something we should be proud, it’s something we should celebrate. Why not do that by taking part in a button throwing festival.”
Do you think this is a good idea for children? Let us know in the comments or email [email protected]
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