There was a time when much of the popular media tended to depict high school and college athletes as less intelligent than their peers. Some old movies depicted them as empty-headed muscle-bound oafs. But how many of those old characterizations are actually true? As it turns out, not too many.
Last year the Los Angeles Unified School District commissioned a study to determine any correlation between high school athletics, student attendance and grades. The study examines a pool of 35,000 Los Angeles student athletes and compares them to their non-athlete peers. The differences are remarkable. Students athletes attended an average of 21 more days of school each year and maintained grades from .55 to .74 higher than than students not involved in athletics. These grades are based upon the district’s 4.0 scale, so the differences are significant.
While the LAUSD study cannot isolate specific causes for the correlation, there are a number of factors that certainly contribute. School sports involve a level of discipline and commitment that serve to create a ripple effect throughout the student’s other pursuits. A child who is willing to put in the extra effort in sports will likely do the same in their school work as well. And sports offer a tangible sense of accomplishment as well. Hard work and practice frequently translate into winning and rewards. A child who learns to link hard work with accomplishment and rewards will find themselves much better positioned to excel at virtually every area of their lives.
It’s important to note that the same discipline that propels a successful athlete will also be found in most successful students. So it may be equally true that a student with strong academic skills will perform better in sports. In this respect the study could be viewed in reverse: Great students have the skills and discipline necessary to succeed in sports as well. But regardless of the relationship, both academic and athletic pursuits bring different benefits to the student. Both pursuits will serve to mature your child and develop discipline.
With the approaching end of the school year, it’s important to keep your child academically sharp over the summer. We offer a number of ACT/SAT tutoring courses that are a great summer alternative. Our tutoring will help keep your child’s mind sharp over the summer, and prepare them for the ACT/SAT tests as well. Summer as a time to build confidence and increase chances for success. Students often lose a majority of what they learned during the school year while they enjoy carefree fun in the summer months. Tutoring helps them to retain information while learning new skills their classmates simply will not have!
Be sure to look for our booth at this year’s Ranchofest on the weekend of June 8th and 9th. We’ll be there with some great prizes and candy. We may even offer some tutoring, so be sure to look for our booth. There will be live music, lots of local performers, and a great variety of yummy food booths.
At Academic Learning Labs we work with families throughout Orange County to help their children develop the habits that serve to propel them to success both in their school work and athletic activities. We specialize in helping students reach their academic goals through math tutoring, science tutoring, and SAT/ACT Prep programs. Located in Rancho Santa Margarita, we’re dedicated to helping your child fulfill their potential and partnering with you to propel them to success. We have proven tutoring programs that will equip your child to excel from their earliest learning through high school and college as well. Please give us a call at 949-546-0800 for more information.