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Part of your job as a parent is to push your kids to do and be their best. Sometimes this means limiting television privileges until your child finishes his homework. Other times it means taking time out of your own day to drive your child to see a tutor. There is no doubt that going the extra mile to ensure your child’s academic success is important, but what about other things? Should you encourage your child to join a sports team?
What Are the Benefits of Participating in Sports?
For children, playing sports is more than just a way to spend time after school – it can have a serious impact on the child’s mental and social development. Below you will find a list of some of the many benefits associated with team sport participation for children:
- According to a study published in the Archives of Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine, teenagers who participated in team sports were smoke, do drugs, have sex, and carry weapons than those who did not.
- Being part of a sports team teaches your child how to work with others toward a common goal – it takes the combined effort of the whole team to win a game.
- Participating in sports can give children and young adults a sense of belonging. This is especially important during middle school and high school where cliques can form quickly, leaving children who are less socially gifted on the margins.
- The results of several research studies show that children who participate in sports are happier
- Is my child performing at grade level?
- What are my child’s strengths? Weaknesses?
- What can my child do to improve academically?
- What can I do to help my child improve academically?
“The teacher is always the first go-to person, especially with questions about curriculum,” VanZant explained. Teachers can also be the best contact for questions about discipline, behavior and social issues, unless another school employee is specifically appointed for this purpose. For example, Greenwood Elementary has a parent liaison that is specially trained to work with parents on these matters.
- Changes to school structure, including more teachers, larger school building and faster pace
- Changes to body image, as students begin attending school with others who are basically young adults
- Changes in friends, as students head to different schools and different classes than those they grew up with