Sports are too often undervalued in our educational establishments, where it is seen as not being as rigorous or valuable as academic subjects. However,sports are an incredibly important part of any individual’s early life, and as such, deserves an important place on any school curriculum. A child who is not given the opportunity to play sports at school may never pursue any kind of physical exercise in adult life: for many, school is where the enjoyment and benefits of sports is first revealed to them.
The element of enjoyment is important: sports should be fun. Anyone who plays a sport knows that it can be immensely rewarding, but our first experience of sports at school often conditions our attitude towards it in later life. If our experience is traumatic, or just plain boring, then we will probably avoid it thereafter, to our detriment.
However, if it is properly taught with good facilities, then there is no reason why every child shouldn’t enjoy taking part in sports.Certainly, the Stamford American International School reviews show that at this Singapore institution, which has 91 competitive sports teams and over 250 co-curricular activities on offer, sports area highly valued part of the curriculum alongside the full international baccalaureate, and the college board’s advanced placement courses, with over 78% of the student body getting involved.
Sporting activities support academic learning
Far from being rival streams, sports and academic subjects actually complement each other. Children need regular breaks from classroom activities during which they can release pent-up energies. When they return to class, they will focus better on the academic written work and learning. Taking part in sports also develops concentration and mental well-being.
Sports help personal growth
Sports are character building and encourage many positive values that will be important in all areas of life. These include teamwork, leadership, co-operation, perseverance, and self-discipline. Valuing physical fitness and enjoying physical team activities means a young person is less likely to abuse alcohol and drugs. They will also develop friendships and social skills that will shape their personality and see them through life.
Sports teach transferable skills
Many of the habits and abilities one learns through playing sports can be invaluable in other areas of life, work, and personal relationships. Some of these are less obvious than others. One example is the understanding of time management needed to balance extra-curricular sporting activities with homework, and other tasks. Verbal and non-verbal communication skills are also developed, along with the ability to plan ahead and lead a team.
Sports keep children healthy
This last point may seem obvious, but it remains hugely important. Not only does playing a sport give children the skills and the habits to keep themselves physically fit for life, it also helps them look after their mental health by giving them a positive release for feelings of stress and anxiety. Obesity, depression,and low self-worth are huge problems in today’s schools, and sports can be a great aid in combatting both.
Sports in schools are both enjoyable and useful. A strong sporting curriculum is a sign of a well-balanced academy, and encouraging children to take part in sports is good for them and for society at large.
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