Sportsmanship for kids
How to be a good sport
Sports and games are a great way to be active while enjoying yourself. Thinking skills, exercise and teamwork are just a few of the benefits gained while being involved in these types of activities with others. But the fun can quickly fade if kids are poor sports, get mad or are not following the rules. But we know that sometimes kids forget…
Not to worry! We have you covered with a complete guide to how we can keep your summer camp games enjoyable and inclusive. Read on to find out our best tips!
Camp games don’t need to be about winning or being the best, so there is no reason not to give everyone the same opportunity to play. Keeping playing time equal for everyone makes the game more fun. No one wants to be left out on the sidelines watching everyone else play. This can be easily done by setting a timer – for example, no one sits out longer then a few minutes and then they switch.
This motto not only applies to camp games, but to all of life. If you remember nothing else when you play games with others, it’s this. If you happen to be really good at the game and someone else isn’t, remember how it feels when you might be playing something that you struggle with. If you can build them up by saying kind words (“Nice hit!”) or passing them the ball, everyone can have fun and feel good about themselves.
Don’t Keep Score
Some of the best games are played without keeping score. Sure, a little competition can be fun, but sometimes taking the score out of the game allows everyone to have a good time. When keeping score, those who may not have as much experience or practice with the game can feel defeated and not want to play. By not taking score, it makes a more relaxed environment and that way, everybody wins.
Be a “We” Player
We’ve all heard the phrase, “There’s no I in TEAM.” That’s because it’s a perfect way to remind everyone that in order to do your best in a team sport you have to work together. Even the best players (think Lebron James) need their teammates. Without them, they would never win. A “we” player, instead of a “me” player thinks about how the team can work together and encourage each other to work hard and do their best.
Everyone is going to make mistakes when playing a game or sport. It could be a tiny mistake or a big mistake that causes the team to lose. Take responsibility for the mistake and move on from it…and others are sure to remind you that “it’s okay!” Taking responsibility can also mean knowing what your role is in the game. By taking responsibility and owning your contribution to the team, everyone will have a much more enjoyable experience. (Even when you see someone else make a mistake, never blame them. You would never want someone to do that to you.)
When getting together to play camp games or sports, there are going to be all levels and abilities. If you happen to be pretty good at the particular game, don’t forget all the hard work and encouragement it took for you to get there. By encouraging others, you can help build up their confidence which will help them get better and be successful. Your encouragement might be all they need for them to run out there thinking, “I can do this!” Don’t forget to encourage someone when they make a mistake. That’s when the probably need it more than ever in order to keep a positive attitude.
Get Adults Involved
Games don’t have to just be for kids! Adults love being active and using strategy just as much as kids. Plus, they could use the stress relief. If you’re short a player, see if your parent or camp counselor wants to join in the fun. Or if you’re having trouble sticking to the rules or not sure how to make the game more fun for everyone, an adult can join in and help everyone stay on track.
Be a Good Sport
You win some, you lose some. If you’re going to keep score, that’s just the way it goes. Or maybe it’s just not your day, and you keep making mistakes and get frustrated. Remember to keep a positive attitude whether your team is winning or not; whether you think you’re doing well or not. Be the type of player everyone wants to have around because you’re the one who has a great attitude.
If you follow our tips, you’re sure to remember the most important part of camp games and that’s to HAVE FUN! Not just fun for you, but being sure everyone else is having fun, too. If you are being a good sport, encouraging others and working together as a team, it’s sure to be an enjoyable experience for all. HIGH FIVE!