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Blog of Kip McGrath Education Centres - Holdfast Bay

Active Body or Active Mind

April 07
by Annie 7. April 2014 12:25

 Childhood is an amazing time, full of exploration, discovery and wonder. It is also a busy time as we balance the competing needs of growing minds and bodies. Nowhere is this more evident than in the tug of war between education and sports.

 No question, Aussies love sports, of all kinds, and we want our kids to enjoy them as much as we do. At Kip McGrath we see evidence of this on a daily basis as we are one of the ‘after school activities’ vying for their valuable time. Students arrive at our doors in full sports kit, soaking wet from swimming, surfing or surf lifesaving, or towelling their hair after a quick shower and a hasty change of clothes.

 It is great to see them active and we encourage it, although there are times when it is difficult to find a free space for tutoring and we have lost out on a few occasions to sports events. Overall though, the old adage of ‘healthy body, healthy mind’ does ring true, and although by no means a hard and fast rule, we do tend to find that the kids who squeeze every minute out of every day have more energy than those with time on their hands. 

 The difficulty comes when parents are forced to choose between activities. This can be for financial reasons, work commitments or family, but the result is the same, and it is often a hard choice between sports and education.

 It is a real ‘hearts and minds’ struggle. The mind will explain to the parent that sports is a fleeting fancy and education is forever, but there is a very loud heart team mascot in the background shouting about fun, winning and taking part. The heart often wins; it has fun, cultural support and cool sports kit on its side. We have times tables and grammar rules.

 But this is the thing. It doesn’t have to be one or the other, just a little less of one to allow for the other. We have met, and worked with, plenty of adults who wish that they had spent a little less time on the pitch (or in the pool, or on the track) and a little more time hitting the books (okay, tapping the keys and looking at the screen). It is true that you don’t get a second chance at being a kid, and you will never be as fit again, but it is also true that your brain will never be as agile and as receptive to new information and new ways of thinking.

 Education is really sports for the mind, and like all sports natural talent only takes you so far, practice is the key to winning. If you think about it that way it just makes sense to include it amongst your child’s other activities. Give your child the best chance at winning in all areas.

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