Hands on Activities

School – Daunting Or Exciting – Sports Could Be the Deciding Factor

The first years of school offer parents a unique opportunity to influence the impact on society, their child will have, as they develop and mature. For most parents, when a child begins school, there is a distinct feeling of loss of control. Whilst for the first time student, school can be a very daunting experience where they too, feel a loss of control. Not only are they the smallest children in the community, they are faced with the insecurity that comes from inadequate social skills, peer group pressure and very often over stimulation in an environment filled with more color, noise, and variety than they have previously been exposed to.

This daunting time in a childs’ life must be handled carefully and skillfully, as it very often determines a childs’ whole school experience. Parents however, are often unaware of their ability to make an impact on that future experience.

Our teachers do a wonderful job imparting knowledge, in most cases there can be no argument about that. The growing mind is hungry for all kinds of knowledge and quick to learn. But children are also physically challenged in many ways. Their growing bodies can sometimes become un-coordinated, tired, and off balance.

Encouraging the child to play sport is probably one of the most important endeavours children can become involved in. Not only do they feel a sense of mastery over their evolving abilities, they learn to master their growing bodies as well. Team spirit fosters a sense of responsibility and empathy for others, and their endeavors become important to more than themselves alone. Pride grows with each achievement, and this crosses over to their school work and social abilities.

School policies will undoubtedly encompass sporting activities, but the school needs the active encouragement of parents to help a child develop a love for their chosen sport. Children who play sport have the advantage of being able to find an area of achievement across either sport or academia, and very often both. This can do nothing but help to build a well rounded pupil. A child who lacks such physical outlets, and who may have difficulty with academia, can become introverted, self conscious, and feel as if they don’t fit in. These feelings, once established, follow a child through school and through life.

The school community, local councils, and other parents, are all reference points for searching out the various activities that can be joined in your area. But don’t make the mistake of showing annoyance with a child who wishes to play one sport, and several weeks later, decides they would like to try another. Never having been involved in sporting teams before, it is understandable that your child may need to try several activities before finding their niche. For this reason it is best not to rush out and buy the brand new uniform, racquets, bats, etc. Look for second hand equipment, explaining to your child that it is temporary while they find out if they are happy with their choice.

It can be a wonderful time of life, watching and encouraging your child as they play sport on a Saturday afternoon. It builds family closeness, respect, and discussion. The child knows his parents are proud of his achievements which in itself builds self esteem. And parents who previously lamented a perceived loss of influence, can continue to feel and cement the bond they have with their child.


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