Do you have an 8 year old that plays on many different teams? Or a 10 year old that has to win at everything they do, even finishing dinner first or getting to every door before anyone else?
At this age, we typically see competitiveness come to the fore, along with a strong interest in being part of a team and working together as a group to complete a task. However, this is also a time where kids can become sensitive to others thoughts and look for adult approval. With quickly changing emotions t can easily become shy and discouraged. It is a critical age for experiences to build the enjoyment that leads to life-long engagement in physical activity.
Taking all these factors in to account when developing camps for 8 to 10 year olds influences the choices our Summer Camp Leaders make every day. By creating opportunities for teamwork, problem solving and independence to flourish in structured games and activities our leaders provide a safe space for trial and error based approaches to complex tasks. This also allows for competition to be a natural component of the environment, whether by challenging oneself or against others in the group. When respect for all sides are shown with a focus on the knowledge gained from the experience and not the outcome of the performance, competition becomes a healthy and positive element.
The Energetic Eagles camps emphasise the positive traits that physical activity, cooperation, teamwork and respect can develop while letting kids know how important they will be throughout their life.
~Chris Wright is Physical Literacy Coordinator at PISE and proud father of a beautiful, little girl. He is in charge of all of the fabulous kids programs, summer camps, teacher mentorship and much more.