State Competitions: 5 Awesome Things They Teach Our Students
March 8, 2016
This time of year, many King’s students are training hard to compete in state and regional competitions. Athletics, DECA, Mock Trial, Robotics, art and music, the State Spelling Bee – whatever it is that spurs our kids to greatness, we love to cheer them on, but what do they really learn by adding rigorous competition to their already busy schedules?
Working hard to win builds skills that are important to succeed in many areas of life. It builds grit, focus, cooperation and confidence and can teach kids the indispensable power of grace.
Grit: When students dig down deep to pull out their very best; when they repeatedly correct mistakes and practice skills over and over, they are building grit, a combination of determination, perseverance and courage. Grit is a quality that all students can develop. Ultimately, that indomitable spirit can set students apart when they compete in the future for colleges, jobs and success.
Focus: Competitive students keep their eyes on the prize. Practice takes concentration. Students learn to manage distractions in order to see something through to the end.
Cooperation: This is especially evident in team competitions, but individual competitors also learn to cooperate with coaches, mentors and teachers as they build a plan for success.
Confidence: When students reach the level of regional and state competitions or cheer on their friends who do, they learn that hard work pays off. Each time their hard work leads to accomplishment, they feel a greater ability to succeed in the next challenge they face.
Grace: At some point, every top competitor, no matter how smart or skilled, will lose. How we lose might be the most important thing that competitions teach us. In those challenging moments, learning grace is of utmost importance – grace for fellow team members and grace for ourselves. It is grace that allows us to show respect and good sportsmanship. And grace gives students the resilience they need to try again.
King’s is proud of all of our amazing students who compete in activities they love. We pray that the skills they learn will help them to succeed as they move beyond King’s and into the world.