1. Write a summary of text 1 “competitive sport for children at the heart of Olympics legacy” in about 150 words. The text examines the notion and opinion of the current English prime minister regarding the necessity for Parliament to incorporate compulsory initiatives aimed at ensuring that competitive team sports is directly added to the current English primary school curriculum. As argued, David Cameron emphasizes that the government should nurture the development of a competitive sports culture as to adhere to the competitive ethos advanced by the recent London Olympics.
The prime minister pointed out that the current period right after the Olympic Games could mark a point of inspiration for young children to play sports more regularly in their free time. Accordingly, a new national PE curriculum draft had been published in the autumn of 2012 that aimed at introducing an academic scheme which would enable sustained pupil physical activity, competence and physique development and the provision of opportunities for pupil sports engagement. The text also denotes an estimate budget cost of approximately one billion pounds Sterling for a period of five years to be distributed accordingly for the competitive sports initiative.
The text concludes in the prime minister emphasising that the Olympic Game can be used as a clear example for competitive sports, as to revitalise and revive the competitive ethos of English schools.
2. Give an outline of the various attitudes to competitive sport in the three texts. The three texts all share a common theme of competitive sports and the revitalisation of physical education and activities as to encourage healthy conditions from the youth of the United Kingdom. Text one pointed out that there is clear positive re-enforcement deriving from both the prime minister and the government to pass legislation aiming to amend the current PE curriculum. Having said that, text 2 attempts to identify that although such reasoning can be deemed optimistically, it is also necessary to establish that sports is not simply a game involving a loser and a winner and that competitive sports and the Olympic games aim to promote the ideologies of ‘be the best you can be’ and that the aim of such physical activities is to send the message of working hard and moving forward. Text two accentuates the necessity to shy away from the ‘competitive’ attitude from government perspective and to emphasize more on achieving a platform of increased coordination skills for people who struggle with such skills and to promote the legacy of women to perform better in sports altogether. In contrast, however, text three identifies scepticism related to the initiative of incorporating mandatory competitive sports in the new PE curriculum draft. The text argues that competitive sports are in their very nature, elitist and that such activities would aim to identify the winners from the losers. It is also argued that some people would find it more beneficial to refrain from potential harm or physical strain, as well as, embarrassment derived from losing. The author of text three also perceives that the majority of coaches will aim to better the prospects of potential future athletes and this may therefore result in the negligence of less promising pupils, hence creating an immediate division of pupils into groups. This, in itself, would undermine the entire prospect and notion of creating a cultural ethos related to increasing physical activity and to better the overall health conditions of pupils all around the UK. Hence, the attitudes from all texts have all identified the pros and cons of such initiatives, in which one must consider as to whether such activities should be left to be voluntary or to be made compulsory.
3. Comment on the following statement from text 3: “If the alleged health benefits of sports are to be realised, then it needs to be voluntary and enjoyable.” It is of common knowledge to assume that sports can have outstanding results on an individual’s physical form and well being. Doctors and physical practitioners all attempt to entice their patients of the several positive benefits from increased physical activity. Having said that, it is also true, in my opinion, that sports should not solely be aimed at being the winner of a game, but rather an opportunity to enjoy the riveting activities that also aims in establishing and developing key future skills such as discipline, teamwork and aiding those who are less physically or mentally inept to accomplish a common goal. The statement acknowledges my opinion in which sports should not be of a compulsory nature as to be impeding on the factor of enjoying and fun, which in my personal perspective is the more primary aim of sports. In conclusion, the statement simply emphasises the necessity to concentrate not simply on making competitive sports compulsory in primary school, but to leave in the hands of the youth to voluntarily enjoy and join in such activities.
4 Because of new rules, the local school has to introduce competitive sport from the age of seven. Write an article (150-200 words) for the school magazine in which you discuss the positive and negative consequences of this decision. According to recent news, our local school will be promptly introducing a new rule, making it compulsory to play competitive sports from the age of seven. Although many scientists and physical experts share the common opinion that such a move would incur an immediate reduction in the onset obesity of the United Kingdom, as well as, the possibility of the development a cultural ethos in which individuals are more conscious involving their health and physical ability, I aim to identify otherwise. Even though I may agree with what most of us have been taught in PE and biology class involving the aims of physical activity in ensuring a better life style altogether, I feel a bit sceptic. In sports, the outcome always acknowledges a winner and a loser, and personally I prefer not to be titled a loser; competitive sports are not for everyone, so to speak. Making such activities compulsory would not only garnish a new wave of winning attitudes but also, as a bi-product, develop a group of ‘losers’ whose only aim is to find a way to survive or get through a physically demanding competitive sports. There is also the onset likelihood of risk to your physical well being. In conclusion, there are both pros and cons for such a rule to be imposed and that, in my opinion, it should be something which the students and parents also have a say in.