On Your Marks, Get Set, Go! Preparing for Success on Sports Day
For many school kids, Sports Day is one of the highlights of the Summer Term.
Few children can resist the appeal of deserting the classroom for the day, and it provides a great opportunity to head outside for some light-hearted competition and release some serious energy!
Champion Planning for Sports Day
If you're involved in preparing for Sports Day, you'll no doubt know how important it is to get it right, to make sure that it lives up to its reputation as one of the most entertaining days of the year.
You'll want to make sure that you've got everything in place, from a list of games, to the sports equipment required for each challenge, not forgetting of course, the Sports Day Awards and Certificates; and, as with any whole school event, this can understandably feel like a bit of an overwhelming challenge. However, don't panic. With this helpful list of tips, you'll hopefully feel a little less intimidated, and ready to get preparing!
Top Tips for Sports Day Preparation
1. Focus on Objectives. It's important to remember that Sports Day has some really important learning objectives, which extend beyond simply engaging in a sporting activity. It's a wonderful chance to encourage teamwork, social skills, and the fine art of working towards a goal. Identify some key objectives, which will help you to fine-tune your planning for the big day.
2. Think about Sports Day Awards. Take some time to consider what you can award your students, and not just the winners! It's really important to make sure that all children feel valued when they're taking part, and to emphasise that winning is not the only achievement of the day. If you're looking for inspiration, there are plenty of low cost options that include off the shelf sports related reward stickers or for a real 'wow' factor, consider personalising your award stickers - personalised stickers can display your school name, event date and even logo and so can mean so much more to receive. Sports Day certificates are also a good option, not only do they celebrate the student's success, but mark the occasion on a really personal note - and you can be sure this will be proudly displayed on the fridge at home for some time!
3. Special Prizes for the Winners. One of the most important things that you're likely to need to source is a range of prizes for the winners. To keep costs down, Sports Day stickers such as the ones above are always a big hit, however if you have the budget, perhaps opt for some small gifts that are fun and light-hearted, such as a small goody bag or book token. However, it's just as important to think about the races you'll be holding throughout the day, and to make sure that all children have a good chance to do well in an at least one event.
4. Encouraging inclusion. Most children love Sports Day, but there are a few kids who might not share this enthusiasm, for a variety of reasons. Think about activities that you can incorporate into the day to develop the confidence of less enthusiastic children, such as fun team games, or sillier 'just for fun' events. Sports Day is a great opportunity for inclusion, and with the right level of planning, it can be a day that is enjoyed by all.
5. Direct other members of staff. It's important that other members of staff know their role on the day. Think about how you can use their skills to not only manage the children, but maintain interest during the day, and encourage a light-hearted sense of competitive spirit!
6. Promote the event - create an event promotion display to increase anticipation or simply write the event details on a couple of posters to pin up in high traffic areas in the school.
With the right planning, Sports Day can be a wonderfully memorable event, providing a great chance for teachers and students alike to enjoy the sun and experience a little bit of fun, friendly competition.
By Joanne Chandler