bowling for sportsmanship

bowling for sportsmanship

If someone can please tell me how to teach my child learn to lose gracefully, I would be beholden to you. 

We’ve been struggling with this for years now, which is to say, as long as Simon has been able to play games. The tricky thing is that he loooooves to play games. But his hatred of losing is just about equal with his love of playing.

Case and point: after our race in Utah, we went with my sister and her family to go bowling. We thought it would be a fun activity for the boys, and for us as a family. And at first it was. It was fun to watch the boys push their balls down the lane at a pace we could have easily beaten. It was fun to see them bounce against the bumpers again and again. And when we pulled out the ramp and let them roll the balls down from the top of that? That as fun, too.

Until Simon, who is no stranger to numbers, realized that his little brother had a higher score than him.

For some reason Oliver’s body just knows what to do with a ball. Any ball. The kid is three years old and managed to get a couple of spares. He beat me and I was not trying to lose. But Oliver’s amazing skills were of no comfort to Simon, who totally lost control and spent half the game being really, really upset. Even after we let him ask other people to bowl for him. Even when we tried to show him how fun it was to be excited when someone else did well. Even when the game ended and we pointed out that we were all still alive and breathing even though only one of us had won. (I think it was my brother-in-law.)

So yes, if someone could give me some pointers on how to not raise a poor sport, I’ll bake you a pie.

ps Although Elsa did not play, she did a good job of trying to blend in with the balls.

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