EduKids Early Childhood Education Centers

Posts Tagged ‘children and sports

Kate Dust, EduKids Education Director

It’s Olympic week throughout the world!  There will be high focus on sporting events, sportsmanship and athletic abilities.  There will be celebrations of individual accomplishments and team success.  There will be “winners” on a worldwide stage and “losers” in an Olympic Stadium.  The U.S. athletes and teams will be celebrated!  They will be positioned on television and in advertisements as the models of health & athletic skills.   All of this is exciting!

What lessons are young children learning about individual and team sports? I think we can learn so much from this Olympic week as we look at our children, as a member of a team or as an individual athlete.  What are the benefits of team sports? 

Considerations:

  1. Before your child joins a team or begins lessons in any formal sport: baseball, soccer… or class: dance, gymnastics, swimming… make sure that this is your child’s interest.
  2. Check schedules of practice, games, recitals and cost.  What will you have to do as the child’s parent?  This is your commitment – and it is often substantial to a family’s time and budget.

Benefits of team sports:

  • Health.  Athletes are healthy.  A team will practice together under the watchful eye of the coach.  Nutrition will be highlighted, strength will be celebrated and healthy habits will be taught for both individual stamina and team benefit.  A healthy body is critical to development and growth.  Exercise is continual and builds muscles, strength and endurance; life long skills.
  • Healthy Competition.  Team sports look different throughout your child’s ages and stages.  Initially, a team will not focus on or tolerate competition until the skills needed for the sport are established and practiced.  Young children will have coaches who are on the field with them giving individual verbal direction and supporting all attempts at the game.  Later, competition will be introduced as part of the sporting event – a team wins together and a team loses together. Individuals do not win a game.  An individual does not lose a game.   As children get older and are ready to understand healthy competition, they will work very hard on their skills and recognize the skills and contributions of others on their team as well as their own important role.
  • Friendship building.  Being on a team offers many opportunities to make friends and be a friend.  Often young children who are together on a team are lifelong friends.  Trophies and photos of little athletes with their team or a new swimmer diving into the pool are cherished forever.

“The Olympics bring families and communities together.  Children and families are watching.  I watch in awe…the competition…the athletes caught up in the excitement!”  GO TEAM USA!! First Lady Michelle Obama

-Kate Dust, EduKids Education Director

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