Think sports are just for fun? Think again! Of course, sports are fun, but they can help useful learning tools as well! Keep reading to incorporate sports themed activities into your homeschool day or to help your child learn important life skills! Sponsored by Little Tikes®.
6 Important Skills Kids Can Learn with Sports
With a name “The Soccer Mom Blog,” it’s probably no surprise to find out that I grew up playing sports. I stuck with soccer all the way to college, but along the way I also tried almost everything else: basketball, cheerleading, and swimming, to name a few.
I want my girls to have those same beneficial experiences that I did through sports. Since we’re staying close to home right now, I’ve been looking for ways to bring sports themed activities into our homeschool and preschool curriculum.
Whether you’re homeschooling or simply looking to practice skills with your kids at home, here are ways to use sports for learning and make learning fun!
If your child is working on learning numbers, keeping score is a great way to practice! Each time your child scores a basket, count with them.
Little Tikes® 3-in-1 Sports Zone™ also keeps score, making it great for individual play too!
2. Addition and Subtraction
Once kids have mastered counting, they can take it to the next level by keeping score with a parent, sibling, or friend. Each time you score a basket or goal, you can add by 1. With bowling, kids can practice adding by multiple numbers at a time, as they knock down pins.
3. Greater Than and Less Than
We keep score not so much to be competitive, but to help our kids understand the concept of greater than and less than. For example, 10 points is greater than 8 points. It’s an example of a practical use for math in everyday life that makes sense to kids right away.
4. Gross Motor Coordination
Jumping, tossing, and kicking are all forms of gross motor activities. These movements involve the entire body, increasing muscle tone and coordination. Improved coordination and balance will help your kids in many aspects of their daily lives.
Developing gross motor skills also builds a foundation for more refined movements, known as fine motor skills.
5. Fine Motor Skills
Fine motor skills are more refined, precise movements. Rolling a bowling ball or placing a basketball in the net are two examples of fine motor skills that kids can practice with the Little Tikes® 3-in-1 Sports Zone™.
Did You Know: Practicing fine motor skills through sports can help kids strengthen the muscles needed for writing!
6. Good Sportsmanship
This is perhaps the most important thing that kids learn from sports, in both team and individual activities. Good sportsmanship means learning how to follow instructions, take turns, and win or lose with grace.
Why We Love the Little Tikes® 3-in-1 Sports Zone™
The Little Tikes® 3-in-1 Sports Zone™ was an instant hit with both of my younger daughters! I love that it combines physical activity and learning — my kids are learning without even knowing it! They’re having fun, mastering math, and getting exercise all at the same time!
There are 3 Ways to Play:
The backboard lights up when kids make a basket, counting as each point adds up. There are over 75 sounds and phrases, so it’s always fresh! (And you don’t have to worry about hearing the same thing over and over again!)
The bowling side of the 3-in-1 Sports Zone™ incorporates colors and shapes into the game, for extra enrichment.
The soccer net is made so that it slides back when a child scores a goal, so the ball stays in the net for easier retrieval. It’s the little details that make this activity set so versatile and fun!
I also appreciate that the Little Tikes® 3-in-1 Sports Zone™ collapses for easy storage, when not in use. It’s a daily struggle for me to keep my living room clean, so space-saving is a big plus!
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