Soccer lessons in expectations

June 8, 2012 in Five Minute Friday,soccer

Eager and anxious parents stand on the sidelines yelling laughably loud anytime a kid touches the ball. If you recorded the cheers only, documented the number of pictures and video taping minutes, you would never guess this was just a regular Saturday soccer game, for 4 year-olds.

We affectionately call soccer for the little ones herd ball. The ball moves, the herd runs after it and if they catch the ball, the boldest players stand in a huddle kicking it until it escapes the herd and they can run after it again. Usually there is goalie or player on the field playing with the grass, swinging from the top of the goal. And often there is one player crying or one parent fighting anger or tears. The player because no one will share the ball. The parent because she can’t understand why her daughter won’t try to get the ball.

We spend the first years of our child’s life teaching them to share everything but sippy cups and diapers. Then we put them on the soccer field and ask them to steal the ball, ignore the player who fell to the ground and kick a ball directly into a goal even though another kid is in the way. Unless a child has an older sibling, expectations on the soccer field are confusing.

And like the soccer field, all things parenting require clear expectations. Part of our job in training our kids is to teach expectations for different areas of life. Shoes don’t go on the table. No running in the street. Put clothes away when you are done with them. No kissing boys until you are 25. Really parenting is a game of handling and communicating expectations. Because not knowing the expectations creates tension and sometimes tears and laughable moments.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Positively Alene June 8, 2012 at 12:34 pm

This is just precious and oh so true! It’s a wonder our kids grow up functioning and beautiful adults with all the opposites we feed into their lives. But speaking boundaries and expectations into their lives is SO important. Yeah you!!!


Tracey June 8, 2012 at 12:38 pm

LOVE that you call it herd ball! I’m from the deep south where we don’t know much about soccer. The only football we know about involves pads and helmets. 😉
Enjoyed your post today! Just hopped over from Lisa-Jo’s place! Happy Friday!


Kerri S June 8, 2012 at 9:21 pm

Great post! Brought back memories of my oldest ones playing! Loved how you linked it to parenting!!
Have a great weekend!


redemptionsbeauty June 8, 2012 at 9:40 pm

Oh my goodness. We dealt out the expectations of summer with our kids after school was over and every single year tears ensue. And then they realize that what we expect isn’t the sky falling. And I never thought about soccer like you stated it here. You are so right!


Melissa June 10, 2012 at 12:15 pm

Love how you define parenting in connection with handling and communicating expectations. My little one says she doesn’t want to play soccer anymore because they don’t share! Who knows what she will say when she starts basketball this week!
(I also look forward to 5 minute Friday and thanks for the comment on mine)


Reese Witherspoon June 11, 2012 at 2:52 am

The administration of the law can never go lax where every individual sees to it that it grows not lax in his own case, or in cases which fall under his eyes. Camiseta Sergio Ramos


Blond Duck June 11, 2012 at 11:00 am

I never played sports, I did dance and karate. But I had the same kind of confusion. My dad encouraged me to stand up for others and in karate we were to defend the weak, so I got in trouble in second grade for punching some kid who was picking on another kid. My dad was thrilled. Principal was not.


Child Soccer Classes June 18, 2012 at 3:30 am

Soccer lessons primarily enable you to learn the basics of the game with so much finesse. Mastering the fundamentals of the game – the basic moves of dribbling, passing, shooting and receiving, is very crucial when you are already participating in game competitions. Thanks a lot.


Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: