Soccer Literacy

Soccer literacy is a program designed to harness the proven benefits of physical activity, leveraging soccer as a tool for literacy development in a fun and engaging way.

What Is Soccer Literacy?
Soccer Literacy is designed and implemented by Global FC to build upon what is taught in the classroom, working in partnership with the schools. The program is intended to provide opportunities for English Language Learners to practice literacy and English language skills through soccer activities that promote teamwork and skills training.

I have not seen a program that got the kids so excited as the [soccer] literacy program from Global FC last summer. The kids did not know what to expect last summer, but after the first session, they could not WAIT to go again. Using soccer, the teachers (coaches) were able to teach/reach kids who do not have any language or academic vocabulary. The kids were held accountable for what they were learning, as well- and were able to retain that information that was taught! Plus, seeing their coaches/tutors collaborating with their classroom teachers had a big impact on them. What a great way to show that we are all on the same page and we are ALL here to help them succeed. I absolutely loved the program!

-Emma Jones, ESL teacher

Global FC Soccer Literacy program launched summer of 2018 at Gladstone Elementary, Kansas City with great success!

A toolkit published by the Swiss Academy for Development shows how integrating sport and play as educational tools can create an optimum learning environment for young learners.Promoting language development within physical education might seem a bit challenging especially since this is not a traditional expectation. However, a number of popular strategies and approaches that promote language development lend themselves to physical education. Peer interactions and collaboration are commonly use in physical education and both enhance language development.

If you are interested in knowing more about the Global FC’s Soccer Literacy program, please contact: mariya@branch-global.com.

“One of the central features of any positive youth development experience is its emphasis on building SKILLS and competency.” (EdgeworkConsulting, 2013)

• Soccer is collaborative. English Language Learners often come from cultures with a communal or collective sense of identity. Soccer Literacy utilizes collaborative soccer drills and literacy challenges in order to meet student needs at a worldview level. Furthermore, peer interaction and collaboration encourage English proficiency and social development.

• Soccer is engaging. Because of the collaborative and interactive nature of Soccer Literacy, students are engaged at all times in soccer and literacy. This level of engagement facilitates higher levels of learning and academic growth.

A number of popular strategies and approaches that promote language development lend themselves to physical education. Engaging in soccer specifically empowers youth in many ways— physically, emotionally, socially, academically, etc. Soccer Literacy intentionally harnesses the power of soccer to foster higher academic achievement, complimenting what is taught in the classroom.

I loved Soccer Literacy because it was so fun interacting with various kids from all over the world, and all kids were excited and seemed to have fun. Seeing the kids reminded me that learning a new thing must be fun and exciting. Making them feel like that is one of the teacher’s jobs, and Soccer Literacy can do that. I’d love to volunteer for it again.

-Takuya Takagi, volunteer

“There is persuasive evidence that cooperative teams achieve at higher levels of thought and retain information longer than learners who work quietly as individuals. The shared learning gives learners an opportunity to engage in discussion, take responsibility for their own learning, and thus become critical thinkers.” (Srinivas, n.d.)

Goals

Improved Academic Performance
Soccer Literacy stimulates academic growth by providing fun, collaborative, engaging activities that encourage, motivate, and inspire students.

Social Development
As students work together in the collaborative Soccer Literacy activities, their different characteristics and strengths will emerge: leadership, mediation, persistence, etc. The opportunity for each child to feel valued for their contribution will stimulate not only interpersonal skill development but also intrapersonal growth.

Bridging Cultures and Communities
Soccer Literacy encourages reciprocal cultural exchange as students and volunteers from various backgrounds work together. Both walk away with an enhanced ability to appreciate and learn from another’s culture.

Growing Ambassadors
As Soccer Literacy serves more youth, those who wish to continue in soccer will be welcomed into Global FC as soccer players. In this community, a village is built around each player, empowering youth to grow from players to ambassadors— leaders in their world.

Expansion of Reach
Soccer Literacy has been employed at one elementary school during its summer session as a three-week program. Our goal is to increase the number of schools Soccer Literacy serves, as well as utilize it during the school year as an eight to twelve-week program, by 2020.

Student collaboration [will] encourage children to cooperate, improve social and interpersonal skills, and help them to better understand the material at hand through discussion and a team learning effort. Students must communicate effectively, work as a team, and demonstrate self-discipline while working collaboratively with their peers. This, in turn, can increase their learning and maximize the educational experience. ” ( Loop, 2015)

Improving Literacy through sport.

“There are a number of ways in which sport can address literacy challenges in particular. Studies show that physical education can improve brain function and academic performance. Sport has also proven to be an important part of academic curricula. A toolkit published by the Swiss Academy for Development shows how integrating sport and play as educational tools can create an optimum learning environment for young learners.” (sportanddev.org)

To receive the GFC Soccer Literacy Proposal, contact celeste@branch-global.com