Monday, October 24, 2016

Athletics at BMS: hidden academic and social benefits

The Fall season is coming to a close around the state. Here at BMS, we saw all of the obvious benefits of extra-curricular sports: team work, socialization, and an increased understanding of their sport. What many people don't see, however, are the additional academic and social benefits of participating in athletics.

This blog post is not being negligent in leaving out important after school clubs and organizations like Science Olympiad, Robotics, and others. However, there are obvious academic benefits to participation in those activities. It's unquestionably important for students to be active in many different arenas outside of the school building, and we are extremely proud of all students and their endeavors.

Many parents and teachers report that student-athletes see a boost in their grades during their sport seasons. This can be attributed to the fact that those students are more physically active, which has a proven correlation to academic success. Sports offer student-athletes an unexpected gain in skill when it comes to the classroom: time management. Student-athletes have to be cognizant of the time constraints that sports put on their schedule, particularly with homework. Often times, the rigorous calendar of sports will force families to carve out time to address academics. A Heather Clark article from 2015 showed "connections between sport and positive psychological and social outcomes, including self-esteem, self-regulation, general life skills, and pro-social behaviour." (Clark, 2015). 

Here at Beach Middle School, 45% of all students participate in an after-school sport. That is a staggeringly high percentage of participation for any schools district. This article could go on to talk about how Chelsea is not pay-to-play, how there are no cuts at the middle school level, and how everyone gets substantial playing time, but that's a blog post for another day. In the end, the Chelsea School District wants to see as many students participating in after school activities as possible. It's mutually beneficial for the student, the family, and the school district. 

If your student is not signed up for a sport or after-school activity, here are some resources for you to get the ball rolling (pun intended).

Beach Athletics Homepage

Beach Extra-Curricular Activities

Sports Physical Form

As always, thank you for reading and Go Bulldogs!