Encouraging your child’s Passion

As a parent you want to encourage your child’s passion. As they learn and grown, their interests and talents begin change, we need to foster their natural abilities. Our children have been given a gift and we should try our best to encourage and support them. Our child’s hobbies and interests can set the course for what they will later do in life.

Attempting to guide our children into a specific area of interest, could do more harm than good. Children need time to find their own passion and flourish; to explore without pressure or limits.

My partner and I both have hobbies and interests, this is a good way of setting an example to the children. By showing them that we too are involved in activities that we enjoy doing.

Encourage your child to try different things, explore different areas, try new sports – open the door for your children to new experiences and opportunities. If your child is never exposed to a new experience then how will they know that it will make them happy and what sparks their interest. It will help to build up their confidence and develop lifelong skills

My older two boys have followed in their Fathers footsteps and taken up running. All three of my boys have been introduced to the sport and all three enjoy doing it. At first it was a way for their dad to find a common ground with the boys; a way to reconnect with them as they became older. But now, they run side by side at the training ground, in races and over the park. Sometimes they may run in silence, others they a may chat about their day or how their training regime is going. Something that started as a hobby for their dad has now become their hobby. Both boys have joined a running club and compete not only for the club, school and borough but have also competed for their County. They have found that they have a natural talent for running and have learned that the more effort they put in the better they become.

Running together

The youngest boy, although loves to run, has taken a different path with his hobby. Football. He loves to play football. Now, no one in the family are followers of football so this is a sport that he has taken up completely by himself. He came home from school one day and asked if he could play football over the park. My son has a deep love for playing Football but not really in watching it, he is not a supporter as such. I remember as a baby, he loved to watch ball sport on TV, he would become enthralled with what he watching. At times it was the only way to keep him quiet – put him in front of a sport on TV and he would calm down and just watch it.

Because our boys have taken different sport paths, it means that Dad and I both have to put in the time to take them to training. Dad, obviously, takes the older two to running and races and I take the youngest to his Football training. We both like to attend the races and matches together as a family, I think this is important as it just shows how much we all support each other.

Through my sons love of Football and taking him over to the park every Saturday morning for training I have also started to play walking football with Westham Foundation. I absolutely love it – it’s keeping me fit and I am still there on the same field watching my son play.

We have noticed that the youngest boy has shown some natural talent in Football so we took him along to a soccer school run by Westham Foundation. After a few weeks he was asked to come along and train with their advanced development squad. So, he now trains with them on a Thursday as well as his training with his club. This is his choice of commitment, given the chance i think he would train every day.

Playing football

They have all shown to have natural talents in sport and I think this is because they have grown up in an active family; they have watched their Dad compete in races and have wanted to do the same. They not only participate in sports but also attend drama lessons, debate clubs and are members of an acting agency.

I will continue to support their choices and will offer guidance when needed.

What way do you encourage your child’s passion?

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Rundown of our active month

Last month, May, was a busy month for the boys as they along with Dad and I have been participating in the Mark Warner’s Family Active Challenge! The boys are very active already attending weekly football, gymnastics, badminton and running clubs but these are clubs that they attend on their own with their friends and not with the family.

This month we have enjoyed being active as a family, spending time together and enjoying each others company.

I have tried a game of Tennis, which i really enjoyed doing, i got a little out of breath running around the court but it was enjoyable and fun and a fabulous way of bonding with the boys. Joseph has been learning how to catch a ball properly, we have enjoyed bike rides, days out at the parks, a visit to Hyde Park and a trip in an amphibious vehicle down the River Thames. Oliver got wet in the garden when the waterbomb burst in his face and Jak has been learning how to play Badminton.

Here is a video clip of what Jak thought of our Active month

 

Find out more about Mark Warner holidays visit their website www.markwarner.co.uk

 

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Heres To Extraordinary

The boys and I watched the impressive Opening ceremony of the Olympics along with 22.4 million other people in the UK, once the olympics started we were hooked. The olympics was constantly on our television, from equestrian to shooting to the athletics we was glued to it. We was lucky enough to get tickets to the Olympics Park to watch the Women’s semi Final in Diving and we also had a day out at Hyde Park to watch the mens triathlon where the boys and I watched the Team GB win Victoriously with a Gold and Bronze medal from the amazing Brownlee brothers. The atmosphere was electric and we was gripped to the Olympic fever so when the Olympics was over we sadly felt like we had lost something, something that had been a big part of our lives for two weeks had stopped, we had even abandoned Eastenders for the Olympics which was a big thing for us as we are huge fans of the drama. All is not lost though as NOW we have the Paralympics to look forward to, I have been lucky enough to purchase tickets to watch the athletics in the Olympic Park which everyone is really looking forward to and again i believe we will be transfixed to the TV even more so than before with the Olympics as these athletes that are competing against other countries make me feel even more proud to be british, they have overcome a disability and become strong and they have shown us that having a disability needn’t set you back from what you want to achieve, they also show us hope and ambition. These physical disabilities include mobility disability, amputations, blindness and cerebral palsy. With only 6 days to go until the opening ceremony Jak my eldest boy was invited along by Sainsbury’s and Mumsnet to attend a very special event of Blind Football to celebrate the 1 million kids challenge. The session was run by Gary Knight who is the FA’s Blind Football Coach who works with the Paralympics GB Football Squad and The England Blind Football team. Gary along with another FA coach Jon Whittingham taught 11 children the skills required to play Blind Football, a high level of concentration is needed and silence is critical as the players need to hear their team mates and the football which contains ball bearing so it rattles when it is in play. A lot more dribbling and close control of the ball is needed so the player knows where the ball is when in play with it.

The session started with an introductory to Gary and Jon and the children were explained about what was going to happen and what they were going to do, they was all led out on to the 5 a side pitch 5 at a time with their blind folds on, all in line and touching the right shoulder of the person in front of them with their right hand.

Being led out by Jon

They were then all shown some orienting, familiarising with their surroundings and determining their bearings. They started at one side of the room and asked to walk to the other side counting their steps as they went and then they were told just to walk half way and stop when they believed they were there. All of the children did so well and got to the other side and the middle roughly at the right spot. Parents were then asked to volunteer in rolling the ball the children so they could stop it with their feet and then pass it back to us, i made sure i spoke to the two children i had at all times so they knew where i was and i explained what i was doing every time i rolled the ball to them. As there were other balls in play they couldn’t just rely on listening to the ball b earing in it as they were getting confused with the other balls so me speaking to them too was important. In a match of Blind Football players call out “yeah” and their names to make teammates aware of their presence and the rules stipulate that players must call out “voy!” – meaning “I’m here” – as they approach to tackle, It’s all about relying on your hearing and knowing your team mates.

After a short break all the children participated in a penalty shoot out for a chance to win a signed football shirt by David Beckham, It was nail-biting stuff and the competition was tough, the children did remarkably well and it was surprisingly impressive to see how the children had got used to moving around while blindfolded so quickly, eventually it was down to two children and Gary made it slightly more complicated than just kicking the ball. The two boys left had to start at one side of the pitch walk forward with the ball until they reached Gary then they had to walk around him 360 degrees and then shoot at the goal, I couldn’t watch as Jak was one of the boys but i was shocked to hear everyone clap, i opened my eyes to see the ball at the back of net, WOW i was very impressed and proud of him. Jak had won the brilliant prize and as a huge fan of football and David Beckham, he was ecstatic, it is going to take months for that smile to disappear from his little face.

The event was even filmed by ITV’s London Tonight, if you would like to watch the clip you will find it here http://www.itv.com/news/london/2012-08-20/countdown-to-the-paralympics/

It was an amazing day and what an experience for Jak to be involved in something so special especially taking part in a Paralympic sport days before the Paralympics start. It is going to be a day that he will never forget, he has learnt that no matter what your ability is you can achieve anything if you set your mind to it, he has learnt of equality and respect. Jak was inspired by the Olympics but after participating in this session he is even more determined to achieve his best with dedication and determination. Sainsburys launched The Million Kids Challenge last year encouraging children and schools to participate in a paralympic sport, to help children realise their sports potential and to inspire a new generation.

Parents and children

The children Orienting

Thank you to Sainsburys and to Mumsnet bloggers network for inviting us along to such an amazing and inspirational event.

“I am a member of the mumsnet bloggers network, a group of parent bloggers picked by Mumsnet to review products, services, events and brands. I have not paid for the product or to attend an event. I have editorial control and retain full editorial integrity”

Thank you reading my post 🙂

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