Building teamwork in Children
This post is about building teamwork in children because a sense of team work is needed to be incorporated in the lives of children. We live in a sports-saturated culture, no doubt about it. Teams for kids are increasingly available year-round, just about everywhere, for every age — even exercise helps kids fend off obesity and teaches a love for games, but consider your child’s personality and interests when encouraging her to get moving. And timing is everything. Team sports are too much for 3-year-olds but other athletic activities (running, swim play, catch) are terrific.
Your little one dazzles you with her strong kick and confident run. Should you sign her up for an organized sports team?
It’s tempting: Opportunities abound to start preschoolers in many sports, even at very young ages, and social pressure to sign kids up early can be intense. But just because your child is coordinated or fast doesn’t necessarily mean she’s emotionally or mentally ready for a team sport or an instructional class. Watch a little-tot soccer game and you’re apt to see a child or two off picking dandelions and another in tears on the sidelines. Before considering a team sport, ask yourself some basic questions:
Is my child ready to follow rules and attend regular practices? (Not likely at 3.)Can she accept coaching from another adult? (Following detailed instructions and modifying behavior is very hard for most 3-year-olds.)Is she ready for competition? (Few preschoolers even understand the idea of competing, and when parents view activities this way, it can add up to a lot of pressure and not much fun.)Can she focus for an entire game? (As you’ve no doubt noticed, a 3-year-old’s attention span is still very short.)
Most 3-year-olds aren’t up for the complexities of team sports or classes just yet. Jumping in at this age could frustrate your child and turn her off of organized sports. Right now, physical play is all about running and jumping, throwing and catching. Clambering on the playground or playing ball with you allows her to develop these important physical skills, too. Free, unstructured play is fun and low-key, but it still teaches kids about making rules, negotiation, and conflict resolution. Teamwork in children is quite necessary and teaching team work habits is equally important.
If a little structure helps organize your day, look into kiddie gyms or gymnastics classes that emphasize free play while helping kids practice basic coordination, like how to do a forward roll. Enjoying movement is the best foundation for an active life.