Here is my child, a player for your team. This is difficult for me because I am entrusting you with a child I love more than life itself. It seems silly that a volunteer with 8 games and 6 practices can shape my child’s life, but it’s true.
So coach, there are a few things I wanted you to know and that I hope you will share with my child.
Teach my child to win gracefully, but more importantly teach my child to lose with even greater dignity.
Know that my child takes what you say to heart so please choose your words carefully and tread lightly.
School is hard for my child and life hasn’t been so easy lately. This sport is the one thing that makes my child smile.
Sitting on the sidelines stinks, we both know this. I realize that my child is not your best player, but please coach, notice the effort. It’s possible this child could surprise us all someday.
My child can be a pest, sometimes whiny, sometimes out of control. You have my permission to teach my child the consequences of poor behavior.
If my child gets hurt in the game, please look for me in the stands, I am the one whose heart has stopped beating.
As a parent, watching my child can be excruciating. My instinct is to protect, but as a spectator I’ve been rendered helpless. My child’s successes and failures are out there for everyone to see. Help me to keep my perspective.
Please help me teach my child the kind of sportsmanship that will carry far beyond what happens on a playing field.
Most of all please teach my child that this is only a game, that there will be plenty more. Ask my child to work hard, to give their best effort and especially to have fun.
Through your words and actions show my child what it means to “love the game”. Thank you coach, for all you do, your time, patience and influence. It will last a lifetime.
Copyright 2004 by Lisa Bates, for reprints or large scale reproductions, please contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org