As Canada develops and implements Canadian Sport for Life, physical literacy grows in importance.
Both individual and groups of sports are working to create or improve their programs for young children. For the first time in many years, schools and sports organizations are sharing a common language and common approach.
This cooperation and collaboration needs to expand, and everyone in pre- school and daycare settings, education, community recreation and sport needs to work together to create the first ever generation of physically literate Canadian children.
To get programs changed, parents need to educate themselves about physical literacy and Long-term Athlete Development, gather information about the programs in their schools and communities, and be prepared to speak out at parent-teacher meetings and minor sport organizational meetings to promote the changes they want to see.
Step 2: Use the Physical Literacy Parent Lobby Kit “Questions to Ask” sheets to gather information about the program in your child’s pre-school, school, community recreation program, or minor sport program.
Step 3: Recruit other concerned parents so that you are not alone. Meet as a group and go over the information you have gathered – discuss what might need to be changed.
Step 4: As a group, decide what needs to be changed – focus on no more than two or three key issues (for example: allocating a specific time each day for fundamental movement skill development in a pre-school, spending more time on skill development and practice for a minor sport program, ensuring equal playing time for all participants in a recreation program, etc.)
Step 5: Make an appointment to meet with the principal, coach or program leader. Try to avoid meeting before or after a practice or when there are lots of children around, since you want the undivided attention of the person you are meeting with.
Step 6: Make sure the leader you are meeting with understands that you want to help him or her do what is best for the children – that you want to work together for improvement.
Step 7: Clearly articulate what you want to happen – focus on what you want to see done, not on what you think might be wrong.
Step 8: Leave the meeting with a clear understanding of the next steps the leader will take, and the time frame in which the changes will be made. Set up a future appointment to review the changes that everyone agrees on. Offer to help, and follow-up on that offer.
Step 9: If no agreement can be reached – then it might be time to consider moving your child to another program.
- Athletes with Disabilities
- Health Practitioners
- Recreation Professionals