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​Have FUN Watching Sports

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Have FUN Watching Sports

Social Skills for Watching Sports

In our last two classes we talked about how our schools can be cool. We talked about how manners and social skills can help our school classrooms, the cafeteria, sports venues, and other places on a school campus be respectful of everyone, and kind and caring to all. We also talked about the many people who should be shown respect for our schools to be cool.

I noticed that we had a guest today and asked Rudy to let the kids all meet his friend. Rudy was excited for the kids to meet his friend Spenser, who he then introduced to each one. I commented on how well he did with his introduction. He thanked me, and said, “Spenser loves to watch all kinds of games and sports. We playfully call him ‘Spectacular Spectator Spenser.’” The kids all laughed at that; laughing with him, not at him.

Good Behavior at Spectator Sports

Carmen wondered, “What’s a spectator?” Spenser explained, “A spectator is somebody who’s watching a game instead of playing. I don’t play any sports, but I love to watch them. I watch games on TV, at school, and in my community.” I entered the conversation with a question,” If the spectators are all those people who aren’t playing the game, or coaching or refereeing the game, what should they be doing to watch like Cool Kind Kids?”

Many hands went up. Spenser responded first with, “I think it’s important to start the game by being respectful and standing for the playing of the National Anthem.” All the kids agreed with that. Rudy jumped up and said, “Then we all cheer and shout ‘go team’! Cheering for your team is cool. It shows you support them.” Roberto added, “I’m tall, so when I stand up and cheer, sometimes people behind me can’t see.” Tanner asked, “So what do you do?” Roberto responded, “Sometimes I cheer sitting down, or move to the back so I don’t block anyone’s view.” Nicole replied, “That’s so cool and kind!” The kids all high-fived Roberto for being so considerate of others.

Quiet Times at Spectator Sports

Francie was waving her hand to speak. She said, “There are times it’s okay to cheer, and times when it’s not. My family likes to watch tennis, but we have to be quiet during matches.” Stephen added, “I watched my uncle play golf once. He said talking can distract golfers, so that’s a quiet game, too.” I then asked the kids what they should know about the kinds of games they will be watching. Spenser said, “Google the sport you are going to see and find out what the rules are ahead of time. You don’t want to be cheering at a tennis match when you should be quiet. That would be embarrassing.” The kids all agreed they don’t like to be embarrassed.

Rudeness at Sports Games

That reminded me of something that is happening more and more at kids’ sports. So I asked, “Have any of you ever been embarrassed by the rudeness and/or behavior of people watching your games?” All hands went up. Spenser shared, “I like to watch games, but it bugs me when people in the stands are rude. It isn’t cool to shout mean things at the other team, the coaches, or the officials.” Rudy added, “I don’t like when parents get angry and shout at their own kids when they make a mistake. That takes all the fun out of the game.” Nicole added, “How do you think those kids feel when they hear someone shouting at them?” “I know kids who hate when their parents come to their games because they are so embarrassed,” said Carmen. Spenser shared, “At my school, we send home rules at the beginning of the year for how spectators should act at games. That helps the game be fun for everyone.” Stephen added, “My community league does that too.”

Being Respectful while Watching Sports

Tanner wondered how else to be cool and kind when watching a game. He said, “I think being on time shows respect for everyone, both players and spectators.” Nicole added, “We should show respect for the fields and equipment too. If we don’t, there won’t be places to play for future kids.” Stephen jumped in with, “Eating at a game is fun, but you have to be respectful with that by not spilling stuff on the people around you. It’s really uncool to throw food or trash around.”

Tanner stood up and said, “I think the way to be a cool, kind spectator is to follow The Golden Rule: Treat others the way you want them to treat you. Then we all can have a good time.” We ended class with that, and all the kids stood and cheered.

© Cool Kind Kid

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