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To be fed up with the way it's seen as OK to belittle/tease children who aren't very good at sport

(103 Posts)
Blueskiesandbuttercups Fri 10-May-13 16:46:06

2 of my children like me are dire at sport,all sport, however they love to cycle,hike etc so are fairly fit.

Their lack of sporty ability doesn't bother me in the slightest as they're all bright,doing well academically and are fit however the attitude towards this lack of ability does.

Ds9 is enduring continual teasing at his lack of football ability,he even joined a team to improve (his idea as he's no quitter) however other team members love to tease him and the other bench sitters at school which does zilch to sort out.Dd is ribbed when she comes last(pretty frequent according to her)and her teacher commented on how she had failed to catch a ball all term in front of the whole class, telling her off(we've tried to no avail to improve her ball skills at home).

What annoys me is if children were to go round teasing children who struggle academically or teachers highlighted poor achievement in other areas in front of the whole class there would be uproar.

The constant negativity just makes it worse.

So utterly fed up with it dp told DS to point out to his two football bullies their lack of academic achievement.Ds is a kind boy but he says today he did just that,I'm not happy but am now thinking along the lines of what is good for the goose is good for the gander.


SinisterBuggyMonth Fri 10-May-13 16:51:47

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

LunaticFringe Fri 10-May-13 16:53:36

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

kotinka Fri 10-May-13 16:55:30

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Blueskiesandbuttercups Fri 10-May-13 16:56:39

I know,me too.

It gets me how those that struggle with maths or English get support,kindness,extra help etc however those that struggle with PE just get made to feel like crap.

BrianCoxandTheTempleofDOOM Fri 10-May-13 16:56:50

I was told I was lazy by my PE teacher. always last to be picked for teams.

Yet outside of school I trained 4 times a week and rowed/coxed competitively (and very successfully!

I just hated having to play netball, the singular most boring sport on the planet, after golf. grin

Scruffey Fri 10-May-13 16:57:33

Very bad of the teacher to chastise your dd in front of the whole class. I would call him/her on that. My ds best friend also unable to catch a ball and the pe teacher spoke to his parents privately about it (they are my friends that's how I know). The child was never humiliated or made to feel he was the worst.

CMOTDibbler Fri 10-May-13 17:03:09

BrianCox - me too! When my crew were in the paper for the medals we picked up for the national championships, my PE teacher actually came up to me and asked if that was really me with a real sneer.

MardyBra Fri 10-May-13 17:05:13

"Yanbu. That's part of the attitude that's left with a lifelong aversion to sport."

Yep. Me too. At least the PE teachers with Hitler-ish tendencies don't let the sporty kids pick the teams any more. I spent years waiting to see if I would be picked last again. At least I was reasonably academic and had other talents. I felt sorry for the kids who struggled with sport and other things.

scratchandsniff Fri 10-May-13 17:06:46


I was rubbish at most sports at school and remember being ridiculed by the teachers and teased by other kids. I used to absolutely dread sports day and get in a right state about it. I wasn't lazy or anything as I was good at swimming and enjoyed horse riding, but was spectacularly shit at athletics, gymnastics and anything involving eye/hand coordination. I remember at primary school we had a nazi of a headteacher and he'd make us jump over a cane balanced between two poles, I always used to knock it off, through nerves half the time I think. He would make an example of me and make me do it over and over again until I didn't knock it off and got the other kids to watch and encourage them to laugh. Horrible horrible man.

I just hope my child does not have to encounter similar when he goes to school. Looking back it really affected my confidence.

LunaticFringe Fri 10-May-13 17:06:58

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Blueskiesandbuttercups Fri 10-May-13 17:10:29

Dd 8 is currently going through hurdles angst ie she's dreading school on PE days in the run up to sports day. sad

I have a hurdles phobia,rem my PE teacher literally screaming at me (and the whole class laughing)as I merrily knocked over every single one.sad

MimiSam Fri 10-May-13 17:15:11

I feel exactly the same and hate the way that sport is given a higher status than other things at school, ie Sports Day (inviting all parents to come and watch the children perform ( in my son's case very poorly). He hates it and I do too. He's great at Art 'though, and Maths -why not invite all parents to come and watch the children paint competitively or do a public Maths competition? No, I thought not - lots of parents would protest at the thought of their child being publicly humilated year after year, but the non-sporty kids have no choice.....

insancerre Fri 10-May-13 17:18:38

Hated sport and PE at school and was never helped or encouraged.
Found out later that I have a lazy eye which means I only have good vision in my right eye, which probably explains why I could never judge distance or speed.
I was also born prematurely and always struggled with running and getting out of breath when doing exercise, probably because I don't have very good lung capacity.

Blueskiesandbuttercups Fri 10-May-13 17:19:38

My dd cries every year.

Every year I've had to leave seeing her crying the other side of the field.Even the nicest girls turn into biatches come Sports Day. Hate,hate,hate it,I only go so she knows I'm there but it's heartbreaking.

I made dp come last year and he was worse than me.grin

grimbletart Fri 10-May-13 17:22:29

It's not just sport though. I cannot sing - tone deaf, can't hold a tune. We used to have singing exams at school and you had to sing solo in front of your class. Cue sniggers, giggles and laughter and comments about foghorns and being able to clear a room. Utter humiliation.

Luckily I was good at sport and academic subjects. And no, I never sniggered at anyone who wasn't good at sport. Just wish they had granted me the same courtesy over my "singing" grin

Shallishanti Fri 10-May-13 17:28:00

it's this kind of thing that put me off sport for life (was always dropping the ball etc) such that now, while I enjoy running and try to run twice a week I cannot consider it sport, much to my family's amusement.
Also agree re the sports days, if you are bad at maths no one expects you to fail in public AND consider it 'fun'

ShatnersBassoon Fri 10-May-13 17:29:35

YANBU. I was absolutely dreadful at most sports when I was at school and dreaded the bi-weekly humiliation of having to take part in things I couldn't do and aim for impossibly high standards. Why the teacher didn't spot that I was struggling and try to help instead of heaping on the humiliation I'll never know. Why are the rules of encouraging success different in PE to those in all other school subjects?

One of my children is shaping up to be as physically able as I was, and even in junior school there's pressure to perform to standards that are unachievable, so it seems that PE hasn't moved on since I left school.

Anyway, I quite enjoy physical activity now. Just don't ask me to do the hurdles in front of a group of teenagers grin

OddBoots Fri 10-May-13 17:35:23

It was like that when I was at school, I was rubbish, I couldn;t even run in a straight line, my arms and legs never went where I 'told' them. I was 30 before I found out that I have spina bifida with a tethered spinal cord.

My son is terrible at sports but he hasn't found the same teasing, thank goodness. He's in a big school where sports is streamed so I think that's what makes the difference.

amothersplaceisinthewrong Fri 10-May-13 17:37:03

Remember, if you can't teach you teach PE.......

MrsBodger Fri 10-May-13 17:39:15

Complain to the school Blueskies. We now have dd no 3 at school and after 9 years of keeping quiet, we finally complained. Hasn't made a huge amount of difference to the way they do things - it's still all about The Team and Winning, and seemingly almost no help for those who struggle, but at least it's a bit better, and now as soon as I so much as clear my throat in the sports teachers' direction they do try to do something to make me shut up and go away, I mean make things better. And dd feels supported. Wish I'd said something years ago.

Abra1d Fri 10-May-13 17:41:07

YANBU one little bit, OP.

And what gets me even more--when you ARE good at it but are constantly left off squads. Witness my daughter: excellent at two unusual athletics disciplines, competes for a club, has competed for the county, won the events in the school sports day last year, but left off the school athletics squad, probably because she doesn't fit the physical stereotypes of how you would look to be good at these sports. Why???

PE departments can be weird little worlds.

BalloonSlayer Fri 10-May-13 17:55:41

Well I'd say YANBU but if you genuinely think children don't "go round teasing children who struggle academically" you are living in cloud cuckoo land.

I'm afraid that children who are academically weak get called all sorts. I don't even want to repeat the sort of things I have heard. sad

My DCs are pretty poor at sport. I remind them that as an adult, I have to compete in a running race, kick a ball or hit a ball with a bat precisely . . . er . . . well that'll be NEVER - but I use my reading and Maths skills every day. That tends to comfort them. But there is no comfort of that kind for the sporty kid who is good enough to shine at school but not good enough to become a professional sportsperson, and not very good academically either.

And now you have encouraged your DCs to tease them? Have you never thought that they might be teasing the brainy kids because the sports field might be the only place they get to feel good at something? Well have a biscuit

thebody Fri 10-May-13 18:00:24

Abra1d, I don't usually advocate having a word with school but that's ridiculous. Do they really know how good your dd is?

It's a shame. Of course all of us have strengths and weaknesses and its great if schools can nurture and celebrate successes in all subjects, art, maths, PE etc.

A good school and a good staff know their children and encourage ALL of them to do their best.

These incidents are no less than nasty bullying from children and teachers alike and should never happen.

ReindeerBollocks Fri 10-May-13 18:02:49

YANBU, DS(8) is very poor at sports. He has EDS and quite small in stature due to a medical condition and malnutrition (medical - I do feed him!).

He gets paired with the girls for running, as they are more of a match for him and he still comes last. He has cried about sports before as he attends quite a sporty school.

He can't even do a few sports due to intravenous devices which puts them out of bounds. He was doing trampolining but was advised to stop due to the EDS. So now he swims. Except he has to miss a third of these lessons due to hospital treatment.

His close friends adore him because he has a great little joker personality. They protect him from being completely ridiculed by the rest of the class.

I hate the emphasis on sports and healthy eating too - DS is on a high calorie diet - yet constantly gets bombarded with information about not eating all of the foods he needs to eat.

I wish I had the time/energy to home school.

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