4 years old and it’s time. Soccer (or football as T would say) is the world’s most popular sport (for kids especially) and we’ve been anticipating their introduction to the sport. So far, they’ve had three Saturday classes and they’ve had a ball (no pun intended). Screaming, laughing, running, kicking – they’re totally into everything about this class. Whew!
And I gotta say…it’s all about the coach (or coaches). Coach Scott is awesome! We couldn’t have asked for a better first coach for our girls. Encouraging, energetic, firm and just an all-around funny guy, the girls follow his every word. We *love* it – and so do our girls!
At the very first meeting, he talked about fun and the philosophy behind kidslovesoccer.com. At this age, it’s about making sure the kids want to play and want to come back for more. It’s about no pressure, just fun. And he totally meant it. T and I were cracking up listening to him talk to the kids…and us. We had a lot of fun watching their first soccer class…and doubly impressed when L was sent off the field for a few minutes.
Fun is great but you can still go too far in the joking around department. It’s just one of those things we’re teaching our kids at this age – when the playing around has stopped and it’s time to settle down and listen. In this instant, all the kids had just finished racing to the huddle. Giggling, L threw her ball at the coach while he was talking. I could see that he admonished her for doing so while he was trying to teach the kids the next drill. The very next second, however, she picked up the ball that belonged to the kid standing next to her and threw it away. That got coach’s attention immediately and he gestured to the opposite side of the field. L trudged to where he pointed, alone.
My immediate reaction was Yes! I saw her throw the kid’s ball away and I wanted to run over there to tell her, “No! You don’t just grab someone else’s ball and throw it away. That’s mean.” Actually, I first wanted to run over there and reprimand her for throwing her ball at the coach when he was trying to speak. But I was too far away. And I was somewhat relieved and thoroughly impressed that the coach handled it quickly and with little fuss. An assistant coach walked over to L while she sat alone and spoke with her. After a few more seconds, she was allowed to join the group again. Her lesson learned, she jumped right into the next footrace, heeding the coach’s instructions.
And this is our new Saturday routine – 30 minutes of soccer in the afternoon, a little playtime at the playground and ice cream – a 4-year-old’s perfect ending to a thoroughly entertaining afternoon. (BTW, L has red socks and K has pink socks – thanks to T’s foresight, we’re able to tell who is who from across the field.)