Youth Forward scholarship 2016 – Teaching kids basketball

Name: Hanna Tarum
From: Great Falls, Montana
Grade: Senior
School: Great Falls Central Catholic High School
Votes: 0

Growing up in Catholic schools, community service has always been a part of
the curriculum of my religion classes. I have been a part of many
projects over the years, from baking cookies for church functions to
volunteering at day camps. Recently my friend and I were asked to
help coach a 5th grade basketball team at a local Catholic elementary
school. I love working with kids and I knew that this would be a
really amazing experience. We had practice every day for an hour and
a half and games every Saturday. In the first practices, along with
working on listening and paying attention, the other coaches and I
taught them the basics of shooting and dribbling and some basic rules
of the game. At the next practice we continued to work on fundamental
skills and built upon those as the days went on. Before we had our
first game our team scrimmaged the older sixth grade team. The game
was not very close and we were beat pretty badly, but to my surprise,
the girls were not disheartened and knew that the other team had more
experience. They continued to work hard at practice and their
confidence grew steadily. On the day of their first official game,
they went out and won that game, then went on to beat all of the
teams in their division. They went into the tournament undefeated and
ended up winning first place. The girls were so excited afterwards
and I was able to see the payoff from all of their hard work. As the
season progressed I was able to see the progress that these girls
were making, with patience and perseverance they were starting to
understand the concepts of the game and were developing skills. For
me, the most important part of this experience was passing on my love
for the game onto these girls. I heard from one of their parents that
the girls spend their recesses playing lightning and scrimmaging and
I saw their excitement grow with every practice and every win. I hope
that the girls will continue to play basketball and grow to love it
as much as I have. Overall this experience taught me the importance
of passing skills down to younger generations and fostering a
relationship with them. This experience helped me to grow more
patient and see the importance of determination when learning new
things. Looking forward I definitely want to continue coaching in the
future and right now I am planning on studying education in college
which would allow me to continue working with kids.

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