Hobbies, Passion, & Education - Ibrahim Olatunji
I remember my secondary school days, when my mum kicked against me playing Table Tennis during my long break from school. I specifically remember an event when she sneaked behind me during school pick up time. "Tunde, I have told you not to waste your time on this Table Tennis game. You will meet me in the house".
Of course, you can imagine the rest of the saga by the time I got home.
Photo: These Football Times
Let me start with some facts that some of us might know.
1. Wayne Rooney started his first football career at the age of 16 with Everton FC.
2. Serbian Darko Miličić was the youngest player ever to play in an NBA Final game. He played for the Detroit Pistons in Game 3 of the 2004 Finals at the age of 18 years and 356 days old.
3. Kanak Jha became the youngest athlete ever to participate at the ITTF Men's World Cup, when the 14-year-old competed at the 2014 event in Dusseldorf, Germany, in October 2014.
4. Lori Anne Madison was the youngest person ever to compete in the Scripps National Spelling Bee at the age of 6.
5. Called to The Bar before she's old enough to go to a bar, a Florida 18-year-old becomes youngest person ever to qualify as a Barrister in Britain.
The list is endless.
Your child can be added to this list too.
Okay, to continue my life-changing story, the house wasn't funny on that faithful day.
To cut to the chase, 5 years after that, I became the second best in 2 colleges in Stoke-on-Trent.
Now, imagine if my parents had seen the same potential my coaches saw in me 5 years before;
the possibilities would have been endless. Although, parents are usually right, when they insist that children get their formal education certifications before pursuing hobbies or sports interests; it is important that at during the child's early years, inherent gifts are identified and allowed to flourish along-side educational development.
Parents, the world is changing and evolving.
Twenty years ago, a child would have been an outcast for his love and passion for a particular sport.
However, in this jet age, children are becoming a ‘wow’ factor in different spheres of sports.
Below are a handful of tips on how to identify and foster greatness in your child in the area of sports.
1. Make observations on whatever sport/hobby your child chooses. If you notice him/her kicking stuff around; buy a football. If they seem aggressive as boys, buy an American football. Every talent/character trait is a blessing, even when you think the child is too restless or playful. Perhaps, with some refining and shaping, that child will be excellent in a special field.
2. Invest in developing your child's preferred sport. If you can spend lots of money on purchasing luxury stuff, perhaps a fraction can be spent on sports equipment for the child. Also, make an extra effort by getting involved in your child's favorite sport for motivation. Allow your children go to Wimbledon, walk the fields of Anfield, cheer up the Red Devils at The Old Trafford and roar with the Mighty All Blacks of the New Zealand Rugby team.
3. Always keep the fire burning in your children in the area of sports. Go to the park with them. Play sports video games with them. Challenge them to debates on sports. Encourage them to learn about their favorite sports. Always push them farther than they can go on their own.
Let our children be the best they can be.
Our children are the future
I am Scribble, the Year 6 Teacher
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