Sports Day and the Benefits of Sport for Children
Sports In Schools
It is hard to deny that sports, whether team based or individual, can have lots of positive impacts on children.
It is understood that participation in sports can aid physical and social development, contribute to academic success and help nurture a child’s self-esteem – to name but a few.
Sport has become so common place within UK schools that we have come to recognise Physical Education, or P.E, as a staple of the school curriculums over the year. It is compulsory for children aged 4 – 16 but there has been concern from schools, parents, and governing bodies over the years that children are not spending enough time engaging in sports.
While many children may love playing sports, not all children enjoy or excel at what we would call traditional sports which may mean they don’t get the full benefits of participation. However, there is another way to encourage children to enjoy sport and exercise…
Luckily, school sports days offer the perfect opportunity to encourage those children who may not ordinarily participate in sporting activities to do just that.
Another additional benefit could be that they offer the chance for the school to bring in donations and sponsorship money to help reinvest within the school and local charities.
The games played at sports day can go beyond traditional events such as running and football and include entertaining games such as the egg and spoon race and sack race – there is something for everyone!
There has been much made in recent years that sports days perhaps places unnecessary pressure on children to win, but here at Lockie Schools we firmly believe the positive of sports days in schools. So much so that some of our team fondly remember them.
I am sure you will agree that technology has changed the way many of us spend our spare time. We spend more time watching television and playing video games than ever before and children are no exception to this. It goes without saying that playing sports will raise their heart-rates and get their muscles pumping far more than sat in front of the television.
Playing sports can also help children to develop their social skills and help to set them up for positive relationship building for life. Through an event like a sports day children get the chance to show leadership, teamwork and communication skills, as they interact with new people and face new challenges. Take for example a three legged race. An event such as this would encourage children to work together to achieve the same goal.
Improved Self Esteem
Participation in sports can have a positive impact on child’s self-esteem and overall confidence levels.
If a child is given the right encourage from coaches, classmates, teachers and parents throughout the day it will help to build their self-confidence.
Essentially, they learn to trust in their own abilities and push themselves.
Moreover, this new found self-confidence has been shown to transfer into the classroom in some cases, as children shake of the anxiously or doubt in their mind about speaking in front of class or answering a question they are not sure about.
This might be the trickiest element to get right as constructive criticism needs to be well throughout to ensure the child can process the information in the right way.
The Best Sports Day Ever
Step 1 – Where and when?
You need to ensure you find the most appropriate location for your sports day. Is there enough room? Is the location safe? Where will spectators watch? These are the sorts of questions you need to be answering.
Step 2 – What games and events?
As mentioned above, not all children will enjoy traditional sports. This means having a mixed schedule of traditional sports, alternative games and other events will help the event to be as inclusive of possible. Why not have a child and parent shared event?
Step 3 – Understand the rules of each game
Be clear on who is in charge of each event and be even clearer on the rules. How many people will take part in each event? How many rounds will there be? How will you know who has won?
Step 4 – Sponsorship / Donations
Lockie Schools Money Pockets can help on this one. We can produce fully customised collection envelopes with the name of your event and school logo. This will make it easier to bring donations into the school and track sponsorship money for individual children. There are so many other things for you to plan for an event such as this – so let us take the strain on this element for you. Give us a call and let us do the rest.
Step 5 – Prizes
Although the day is about engaging as many people as possible with sports and physical activity it is important to recognise the efforts of those who have won individual events or successful teams. You could even use some of the donations gained from your Money Pockets to buy small tokens gestures.
Step 6 – Get enough help
Remember ‘many hands make light work’. It will take quite a lot of time to set everything up, keep things moving throughout the day and pack everything away when the final whistle blows. Why not invite parents to help? Our top tip would be to put a letter explaining what you need in the Money Pockets you send home with your children, so that parents will see the letter when they put their donation or sponsorship money in Money Pocket.