A critical component of child development is physical development, and integrating a strong program of sports and physical education is an important element in the school’s commitment to building well-rounded students.
A growing body of research literature finds that in addition to improved physical health, sports play a primarily positive role in your development, including improved academic achievement, high self-esteem, fewer behavioral problems, and better psychosomatic development. It has long been thought that the many facets of playing sports – the discipline of training, learning teamwork, following the leadership of coaches and captains, learning to lose – provide lifelong skills for athletes.
The literature on youth sports stresses the positive effects of participation in learning the important life skills of goal setting and time management combined with enjoyment; the development of a strong sense of morality; and the development of an appreciation of diversity. Longitudinal studies have shown that children and youth participating in sports, when compared to peers who do not play sports, exhibit:
• Higher grades, expectations, and attainment
• Greater personal confidence and self-esteem
• Greater connections with school – that is, greater attachment and support from adults
• Stronger peer relationships
• More academically oriented friends
• Greater family attachment and more frequent interactions with parents
• More restraint in avoiding risky behavior
• Greater involvement in volunteer work
These outcomes are thought to be related to the contribution of sports to learning values and skills associated with initiative, social cohesion, self-control, persistence and responsibility. Theories of positive youth development stress the importance of sports in acquiring skills that are beneficial in other domains (school, family, work) that lead to better adaptive skills.
At CFP, children regularly participate in physical education and have many opportunities to get involved in additional sports programs.