Books, Kids

Lessons from Weekend Sports

June 11, 2012

If you are a sports fanatic or just live with one, you couldn’t avoid the number of games and matches going on this weekend! Let’s just say it got a little crazy! Around here, the boys talked and watched everything from fútbol (Euro Cup and World Cup qualifiers), to boxing, to tennis, to basketball,  and even to horse racing. Besides everything being so exciting, there were many surprises with upsets, controversies and bad decisions in the big world of sports. So much had to be explained to Diego as he bragged or cried over final scores.

It’s really hard for young children to deal with competition and losing. It’s hard when they are the ones playing a sport or a game and don’t win. We have noticed that Diego gets upset even when his favorite baseball or soccer team lose on tv! And when he does win, he loves to brag!

Not long ago, I bought Diego the book, “I’m the Best” by Lucy Cousins to help me explain to him how everyone has different talents, different strengths and different interests that make us good at something or not. It’s hard to watch professional athletes give interviews and be so “confident”, as they brag about their skills, predict big wins and talk bad about opponents. How do we prevent our children from modeling that kind of behavior? Kids love and look up to athletes but it is up to us, the parents, to teach them the great act of sportsmanship. I pull out this book quite often to remind Diego how bragging makes other people feel and that we simply are not the best at everything.

As Diego switched team preferences while watching a Euro Cup match because his team of choice was losing, I realized that even though we talk about this a lot, we don’t have a book for the boys about dealing with winning and losing. I love to use books to reiterate a message I am trying to instill. So I went on Amazon and came across:

Winners Never Quit by Mia Hamm  is about a little girl who storms off the soccer field when her team is losing and she has to learn a hard lesson from her team. If you have a little sore loser at home, this book looks perfect. I know I will be getting it! I want to teach my sons how to lose gracefully and how to win without boasting.

Do you have any good book recommendations or tips for little sports fanatics? Like everything with a young child, this too is a milestone that takes effort from parents and children to achieve together. Conversation is key and we will keep the discussion going!

Have a fantastic week!

Your friend,

Betty

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