'As Canadian as everyone else': Surrey Muslim School tries out road hockey
From kindergarten to Grade 7, students tested out their stick handling skills
Students at the Surrey Muslim School took a break from their regular curriculum on Wednesday for a lesson on Canada's national game.
"A lot of our kids are new immigrants. They're from mostly desert countries, they are not familiar with hockey very much, and yet they are as Canadian as everyone else," said Ali Roy, the school's principal.
"So, we thought we would introduce them to Canada's love for hockey."
Roy organized the school's first ever road hockey tournament to help the students fit in with others once they graduate from the school, since there is no Muslim high school and they will most likely have to attend a public high school.
"It's important to integrate them into Canada and for other people to see the girls in hijab playing hockey," he said.
Despite the rain, all 230 students from kindergarten to Grade 7 participated in the games held in the vacant parking lot behind the school.
For the most part, the students enjoyed Canada's national sport.
"What I like most about hockey is that you can run, you can make goals. I don't like when you get hurt or injured," said nine-year-old Eliya Khan.
The students didn't care much for the conversation about hijab, nor did they feel "un-Canadian." They were more interested in the final score.
"We won and we did not expect that, so that was really cool," said Grade 7 student Ayra Ali.
The Grade 7 girls beat the boys in the semifinals and ended up winning the championship after facing off against the teachers in the final round.