Sunday, November 09, 2014

It's a stupid rule. Well, no.

I serve as a mentor to our league's youth referees and get to watch a lot of little kids' games.  At one of yesterday's 3rd grade games, I noticed that one coach was hanging around the goal area, giving constant instructions to his team's goalie.  I went to the other coach of this team, who was on the sidelines in the appropriate place, and asked him to get the other one to move back to the sidelines.  He said, "Would you please tell him?" implying that he had failed in that task.

So I did so, and the coach gave me a very hard time.  "How can you expect the girl to learn if I am not there to explain things to her?"

I said, "You do that during practices.  She'll learn the rest by playing and thinking."

"That's stupid," he said, "This is a developmental program and she needs to be told what to do."

I said, "Well, actually no."

He said, "It makes more sense for me to do it from here rather than yelling from 30 yards away."

I said, "That's not such a good approach either."

"Well, if you tell me it's a league rule, I'll move, but it is a stupid rule."

He moved off, and guess what?  The little girl did just fine on her own.

The Dutch, who are excellent youth development instructors, often put it this way: "Let the game teach the game."


Janice Lynch Schuster said...

From Facebook:

So true. Why do we have so little faith in the ability of children to learn on their own?

Anonymous said...

Great story, illustrates the need for 'doing' so well. This is why we have simulation labs & use scenarios to teach adults & kids. Provide them with the armour of knowledge send them into to battle to learn from the blows.

Charlie said...

It was amazing what coaches will do. It's third grade.

Marilyn Morrissey said...

From Facebook:

Helicopter coaching, like parenting. How to make a kid feel incompetent.

Ann Anderson said...

From Facebook:

"Let the kids play."

Gene Lindsey said...

From Facebook:

Paul, it's just like Lean. Leading in a Lean event teaches Lean and leadership.

Richard Corder said...

From Facebook:

Well said -- a good reminder and so many parallels!