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What kids can learn from the Sochi Olympics about persistence

Sochi Olympics and persistence in childrenThe winter Olympics 2014 begins today in Sochi, Russia, and goes on until the 23rd of February. Like its summer counterpart, it is expected to be a grand spectacle, and thousands of people across the world, you and me included, will turn to their TVs to view the events. As with most events of this grand scale, this one too has its share of controversies, but with Vladimir Putin taking this as a personal challenge to showcase his might, this game promises to win many eyeballs.

But hoopla and  controversy aside, the games should be watched just for the great feats of athleticism, for the sheer beauty of watching a sport executed at its highest level of skill. And when you sit down with your children in front of the TV and ooh and aah at the gravity-defying stunts and marvel at the seemingly impossible twirls, you may hear your kids sigh, “Oh, I wish I could do that.”  This is a great moment to teach your kids many valuable lessons – that of persistence, of never giving up, and of giving up a lot – giving up a life of ease and comfort, in order to pursue your dream.  While most of these athletes have the basic skills and aptitude for the sport they are excelling in, reaching this level requires much more than that.  It is important for our children, born in an age of instant gratification and I-want-it-now, to realize that somethings – and most worthwhile things – can only be achieved the old-fashioned way – through blood, sweat, toil and tears.


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Gayatri Kulkarni is on the ParentEdge Editorial Panel. Her children have studied in the Indian ICSE, the International Baccalaureate and American school systems – giving her a ringside view of the pros and cons of all three systems. She has a multicultural approach to education and is interested in learning methods that stimulate a lifelong love for learning.

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3 thoughts on “What kids can learn from the Sochi Olympics about persistence

  1. Swati Nitin GUpta

    Well said Gayatri, as a mother of a five year old there are times when my son says oh I wish I could do it and we (his grandparents, uncle, aunty and us) tell him there is not only hard work but a combination of both hard work and a good diet.

  2. Ramya Srinivasan

    When kids see super achievers out there, it is soooooooo important to let them know that the achievement comes out of discipline and tons of hard work and commitment. I find the latter (commitment i.e.) totally lacking today, primarily because of the many distractions around – a year of tennis, a year of football coaching, a year of music, a year of piano… – when and how do we get the child to commit himself/herself dedicatedly to the one thing that means the most to him/her?


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