I, along with the rest of the world, have been glued to the World Cup. Of course the diving is always a topic of discussion and I have to admit that these players make soccer look more painful than childbirth. However, there is a silver lining to this whole embarrassing diving theatrics. Kids LOVE acting it out.
Being a PE teacher I am always looking for fun warm up games that convinces kids that they love running. I actually got this idea from my sister (also a PE teacher). The game involves kids running around —in the same direction so that they don’t collide with each other— then when you blow the whistle the kids have to do their best impersonation of a World Cup dive. I loved hearing about all the different antics that went on and it even made me miss teaching. Kids are so creative and love to be silly, so often we don’t give them enough opportunities to do so!
There are also lessons to be taught here too. If diving looks so silly why do grown men do it in front of millions? Where is the integrity of sport if you have to dive to win? It even turns people off sports when you hear about the cheating that goes on. There are so many positives about sports that can actually help children grow to be better people, to be better Christians. Things like community (teamwork), commitment (practice), perseverance, sportsmanship and hardwork. Even things like wins and losses help children to see that there will be good and bad times in life and to never give up no matter the odds. However, the desire to win can also become so strong that you resort to taking enhancement drugs, intentionally hurting other players and yes diving. The World Cup provides an opportunity to discuss these issues with your children and help them decipher the good from the bad. There are also some players that don’t play that way and have success. Lionel Messi from Argentina is one such player you can point to, as being successful without diving.
Who knows maybe by the time my child is able to play this particular game she won’t know what I’m talking about, because diving has become a thing of the past. I remain optimistic, but until then why not have a little fun with one of the silliest actions known to sport IMO.