A&B Team Selection – A Negative Impact on Personal Development?
A & B Teams- Selection which has a Negative Impact on Children’s Personal Development
What do you do if you have 20 kids in the same age group? Majority coaches label kids into bracket A and B because it is easy. Do they equally think how easy children pigeonhole in team B find it very difficult to understand why? Kids are not stupid. Why then adults make them feel worse before they even kicked the ball? How do you encourage the child to practice (or even come to training), inspire him/her to fall in love with the game, when team B simply means “I am not very good”? My argument is that selecting children at a very young age is not a sensible thing to do anyway. Why? Because children are not mature enough to understand why little Charlie play in team A and little Adam in team B. These have negative consequences on child personal development. Here is why (including alternative solutions):
- Intelligent team names-rather than “Team A & B” seek to name the teams using: children cartoon character, funny names etc… Although you may be right saying all we have done is just change the name, however, deep-down children will be less concern which team they play and why, they may like and associate with names quickly and their self-esteem, well being will be far less affected
- Children will feel equal as they always should be-letter “B” use in this sense means already worse, everyone knows that, including kids. That is natural lead into the issue at hand such as: I am not good enough-why? Children will be reluctant to play as rightly so, who wants to feel worse? The damage to their confidence, motivation, enjoyment will be high. Eventually, this will only lead to two sad consequences: a) child stop playing the game b) the parent will take him/her out of the team. Child-friendly names mean kids will feel equal and hardly ever notice any changes.
- Mixed the children at least twice a week-once you changing the names, then you need to follow with next important step -equal selection. Try to avoid situations where more skilful children play with each other every week as this soon became noticed by other kids. Therefore, I encourage you to try mixed skilful kids with less ability wise. This simple step will make all children feel equally important. In addition, children will learn from each other in which case will benefit all of them.
- “B” player-negative reputation-it is extremely difficult to shake off that negative reputation. No child wants to feel worse amongst their own peers. Is far to say that may be openly exposed to jokes and in some cases even abuse. Coaches have a duty to protect kids from it. Prevention is always better than the cure so is best from the start to completely abounded name “B”
I understand that working with children is already challenging. Make them feel happy and equal is our duty, not a choice. A child laugh could simply be one of the most beautiful sounds in the world and I’d like to hear them laughing all the time.