Sportmanship and Empathy

word of month character

As I discussed sportsmanship with our classes one thing came up that I found very interesting.  Sportsmanship is very much like empathy.  When we look at what we do through the eyes of others, when we put ourselves in their shoes we know immediately if what we are doing demonstrates sportsmanship. 

I know that when I think about who I like to compete with it is those that don’t complain if they lose or gloat when they win.  They don’t yell at me if I make a mistake, and they don’t make fun of me.  They won’t push me and always try to make things fair.  Now if they are the things that make me feel good about playing with someone, then I want to be sure to do the same for them.  (that is empathy)

This is a great time to teach our children about empathy using sports or games.  They can see and feel it and that experience will have the greatest impact on them.