Tag Archives: soccer

Field Day

P1180080Yesterday, our co-op had a field day for the elementary students. It took a lot of planning and a lot of organizing, but it was a lot of fun. It was a great way to conclude the school year for the younger children.

Even if you’re not part of a co-op, you can organize a field day with other homeschooling friends. Here are some ideas to get you started.

First, find a good location for your field day events. You might go to a public park with a field, or inquire at a church in your area for permission to use their land. We’ve had them at both places, and everything has gone well.

Next, plan your field day events. The events the children participated in yesterday included:

  • Three-legged race
  • Wheel barrow race
  • Sack races
  • Tug-of-war
  • 50-meter dash
  • Softball throw
  • Bean bag toss
  • Egg-on-a-spoon race
  • Bowling (using plastic soda bottles)
  • Water balloon toss
  • Wet sponge over-and-under relay

You don’t have to do all of these activities, however. Along with the other moms in your group, see what other events you can come up with. You might want to try:

  • Frisbee throw
  • Jump roping
  • Relay races/passing a baton
  • Ping pong blow
  • Soccer ball dribble
  • Football throw
  • Hoola Hoop Marathon
  • Basketball free throw
  • Egg toss
  • Miniature golf

In preparation for the games, set up a “station” where each game will be played. Be sure all necessary equipment is at the station.

Next, divide the children into groups based on ages and/or height. You might also want to separate the groups by gender as well.

If you haven’t done so already, enlist the help of the other parents. Have a parent supervise each station and make sure all the students are playing according to the rules. Provide each parent with a clipboard, pencil, and paper, so they can write down the names of the children who come in first, second, and third place.

At the end of the games, you can reward the children in several ways. You might assign point values to first, second, and third, then give those with the highest points on each team a special prize. Prizes can include toys, candy, gum, restaurant coupons — whatever you think they would like. Or, you might give out ribbons to those who placed. Either way, it’s also good to have a small prize or ribbon for everyone who participated.

However you organize it, field day is a good day to teach about friendship, sportsmanship, and fun!

Time with Friends

DSC_9545For the last couple of years, my children have done quite a few extracurricular activities: P.E. class once or twice a week, a literature class once a month, FCA club meeting twice a month, scouts, music lessons, art classes, and holiday parties. We saw the same friends sometimes two or three times a week, and they enjoyed being together. This year, though, that group has gone in many different directions, and we haven’t seen some of those friends since school started back.

I’m not worried about my children’s socialization — they’ve been meeting new people this year as they’ve attended co-op classes. We still have some friends over to our house once a week for art lessons, and that’s a lot of fun. But as the saying goes, old friends are like gold, and I don’t want my children to lose touch with the friends they’ve spent so much time with in the past.

So today, I made the 30-minute trip back to our old P.E. class. The P.E. class was re-arranged this year so younger children play games during the first hour while older students play during the second hour. My oldest, John, was the one who wanted to participate the most, so we went for the second hour.

And it was really good. The girls, Luke, and I went to a friend’s house who lives nearby; her girls and younger sons weren’t doing P.E. that hour, so all of them had a great time playing together inside. Another friend whose older sons were also in PE stopped by with her daughter, and it turned out to be a very relaxing visit. And John had the opportunity to play soccer with friends he hadn’t seen in a while either.

On the way home, I asked them if the trip was worth it. A resounding “YES!” went up from everyone else in the car. We won’t be able to go every week, but when we can, we’ll make the effort to get there. It’s an investment of a little more time and a little more gasoline, but I’m sure it will have a big return as the relationships continue to grow.

Homeschool PE

A few years ago, my children were involved in a summer soccer program taught by a man who used to coach a high school soccer team. As the summer came to a close, one of the moms thought we should get the coach to start a homeschool PE class. Our city’s YMCA offered classes, but they were thirty minutes away – could we convince the coach to start up something nearby?

We did! Three years later, he’s still a salesman by day and a homeschool PE coach two afternoons a week. For one hour on Mondays and Thursdays, children ages 5 through high school get to participate in dodgeball, kickball, softball, flag football, soccer, and more.

The coach divides the students into two groups, ages 5 – 9 and 10 and up. This year it’s been a little harder, though, as he hasn’t had as many parents volunteer to help out, even though he offers a discount in the fees. When enough parents are there, however, the program runs smoothly. We meet at a local park or in a church gym. The coach leads the older kids in sports activities and provides plans and equipment for the moms who work with the younger ones. Every once in a while, he switches off, working with the younger children while a mom referees the games of the older students.

One of the biggest benefits of this PE program, however, has been the time of fellowship the students have with each other. We meet with the same friends on a regular basis, and almost everyone stays about a half hour after the class is over. Moms have time to visit with and encourage each other, teens start up their own game of basketball, middle school girls huddle around talking with each other, and younger children play on the playground. ┬áThere’s usually 30-40 students there each time, providing lots of opportunities for friendships.