..to think this is a bit cruel

(38 Posts)
badbelinda Fri 15-Mar-13 22:38:16

DD told me the other day that the teachers make them pick teams for sports still. I was very surprised, I clearly remember the abject terror of being "last picked" and the humiliation that followed, and had assumed that kind of thing went out with the belt. DD was upset because one of her friends had picked practically everyone else before she picked her. DD says she's usually one of the last picked but thinks that it's fair enough because she's "pants" at sports anyway but was upset this time because it wasn't a sports team they were picking. She says it's even worse if she has to be team captain and do the picking, if you pick the people that are best at sports they're usually older boys and then everyone says you fancy them. She's 9. I just can't believe they still subject children to this kind of torture but wonder if I'd be overreacting to have a word with the teachers. (Apparently they say it's the only way to make the teams fair but I suspect they were never the kind of children who were last to be picked). AIBU?

HoHoHoNoYouDont Sat 16-Mar-13 19:52:17

grin @katy

KatyTheCleaningLady Sat 16-Mar-13 19:51:05

Ah... the ritual humilation of picking teams! In my childhood, this was followed by a rousing game of hurling balls at the faces of the weak dodgeball.

Fuck that shit. Fuck it and kick it and tell it to go to Hell. You know who likes this shit? Fucking dumb-ass jocks and their fucknugget gym teachers.

Oh, yeah. I got issues.

Still18atheart Sat 16-Mar-13 19:49:21

YANBU I was always picked last. Due to not being sporty in the slightest or popular.

I hated P.E for that

Loved being chosen for team capt so I could pick the people who were chosen last first

HoHoHoNoYouDont Sat 16-Mar-13 19:46:49

It's meant to make you try harder so that you're not the last to be picked next time.

moominmarvellous Sat 16-Mar-13 19:19:01

Barbaric? Come on. I was picked last in PE too. I'm over it.

Mugofteaforme Sat 16-Mar-13 19:07:10

Is a good point about popularity over sporting ability. I was often picked last despite always being at the front for the 100m and long jump on Sportsday. I guess (at the time) I was a very quiet kid and acaedemic, not that thats en excuse. To be honest even in my 40s I still feel a stab of pain and really can't believe this shit still happens..It's not hard to randomize the selection these days perhaps as a maths or IT excercise for the older kids.

BlackholesAndRevelations Sat 16-Mar-13 08:03:14

Haha, generalisations!

BlackholesAndRevelations Sat 16-Mar-13 08:02:31

God, we don't do this at my school. Looking back (always ALWAYS being the last one picked) perhaps this is the reason for my crippling lack of self confidence now sad

Definitely say something. I wonder if your dd's teacher is a) a crumbly old fashioned one or b) a sadistic male teacher who should be in secondary, where one might argue (rightly or wrongly) that you don't need quite the amount of loving care as a teacher? Harsh gebealusations of course, but I have worked with both.

firesidechat Sat 16-Mar-13 02:31:02

This thread has taken me right back to my school days and the public humiliation of being picked last. It scars you for life and always thought it was a thing of the past. Perhaps the lovely sporty teacher is reliving their own school days, but with the added bonus of being picked first.

You are right to be unhappy.

Whathaveiforgottentoday Sat 16-Mar-13 01:01:26

I don't think it's the done thing any more in PE or any other subject or at least not in the schools I've worked on. I wouldn't be happy with this.

AgentZigzag Sat 16-Mar-13 00:08:27

'well, is it really that big a deal?'

Going on how many times it's mentioned in general and in films etc as the antithesis of happy childhood memories, it's made sufficient impact on people to be noteworthy.

You can't have felt it to talk so offhand about it.

It's not just the one experience, it's always alongside multiple other isolating tactics that single out a few children as outside the 'in' group.

MummytoKatie Sat 16-Mar-13 00:05:45

whois - but it's a weird combination of sporting ability & popularity so doesn't necessarily give even teams.

Why not just have the PE teachers divide the kids based on their knowledge of the abilities?

Re: big deal. It never happened to me so can't really comment but the fact that lots of people still remember plus it pops up in children's literature all the time means it presumably does.

We have a national childhood obesity problem - why make sport less enjoyable than it could be?

BettyStogs Sat 16-Mar-13 00:04:43

I guess you were never picked last, whois?

badbelinda Fri 15-Mar-13 23:59:48

This is a small school Whois, composite class of 23, the teacher will know exactly who's best at sports and be able to split the class accordingly to make sure the teams are fair.

MummytoKatie Fri 15-Mar-13 23:57:22

Agent - I never get why people assume that everyone fits into one box or the other. Some kids seem to be talented at everything. Some never get to shine. Let's not emphasise it any more than we have to.

Picking teams is also a huge waste of time. I can't imagine spending ten minutes at the beginning of a maths lesson discussing exactly how the class ranks on a weird combination of maths ability and popularity.

So why do it while standing in t-shirts and shorts in -2 degrees weather when the kids could be running round getting warm?

(And I was pretty sporty as a child so when this was done I was generally in the first quarter to half picked so no axe to grind here except the one of common sense!)

whois Fri 15-Mar-13 23:55:02

You do end up with very even teams doing this tho rather than a 'random' team which could have several of the best players in.

Take the point that its not nice being picked last but, well, is it really that big a deal?

At least with sports teams if the whole class is divided up into two you have big range of ability in each and probably quite even teams. Split up into groups of 5 for academic work and its shit being with rubbish people!

AgentZigzag Fri 15-Mar-13 23:35:43

I did think about them MummytoKatie sad

It's worst case scenario isn't it?

MummytoKatie Fri 15-Mar-13 23:34:37

But being academic doesn't make you bad at sport. And being good at sport doesn't make you unacademic. (My ex-junior international sportsman / Oxbridge graduate husband is currently bumbling around the kitchen making a big mess.)

What about the kids who don't shine academically or at sport?

DoubleLifeIsALifeHalved Fri 15-Mar-13 23:34:21

Barbaric stuff, I am surprised they still do it. Hideous.

badbelinda Fri 15-Mar-13 23:19:20

Thanks all for your comments, I feel a bit more confident that I'm not just being neurotic if I tactfully raise it at the school now.

Corygal Fri 15-Mar-13 23:09:54

At my school, this delightful activity was known as 'The Thickies' Revenge'.

Funny, no one was allowed their own choices for projects and teamwork. grin

AgentZigzag Fri 15-Mar-13 23:06:10

'to make the children who are less academic'

That meant to say the children who are more academic.

AgentZigzag Fri 15-Mar-13 23:04:11

I hadn't thought about that angle Gradually, but surely there must be a better way to make the children who are less academic feel they're valued than at the expense of the less sporty ones? (or even if they're sporty, the one's the whole class feel it's OK to isolate and exclude, it's just enabling a group/pack mentality scapegoating certain children)

If it was turned around, it'd be the same as reading out in the class what scores everyone got in every test and saying how the children with the lowest scores are thick/stupid, which you'd also have hoped they still don't do.

The answer would be for the teacher to pick the teams, I can't understand why they don't.

TheCrackFox Fri 15-Mar-13 23:02:25

Does this shit still happen?

Funny how academic children aren't allowed to pick their team when they have to do group work.

badbelinda Fri 15-Mar-13 23:01:30

In answer to GraduallyGoingInsane, I think the difference with this is that the children are being asked to rank each other or pick each other for what may be ulterior reasons unrelated to sporting ability. If your DD2 is good at sport this will be evident at every PE lesson or sports day, objecting to the children picking each other for teams doesn't mean I think sport is just a "bit of fun".

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now