In the lead up to the 2023 FIFA Women’s World CupTM Australia and New Zealand, Football Australia has introduced school football programs aimed at encouraging students to learn the game, immerse themselves in Australia’s beloved football culture, and make history as part of this sporting event.
For football enthusiasts, the legacy of Australian Football is truly the stuff of legends, cherished and loved by many, and the centre of a vibrant football culture which is celebrated at all levels across the country. Renowned as the ‘world game,’ football in Australia has a strong history of inclusion and multiculturalism and has accrued a rich and storied history.
THE BENEFITS OF LEARNING ABOUT FOOTBALL
As one of the oldest and most popular sports in the world, the game of football presents a number of benefits for children who learn how to play. Football is an excellent way to improve a child’s physical fitness and overall health, and helps develop strength, endurance, agility, and coordination abilities. The game requires significant physical output and energy that can reduce the risk of health complications and help build a more robust immune system, improve sleep quality, and promote healthy body image.
In addition to being a fun and engaging physical activity, football offers many social and emotional advantages that can aid in children’s healthy development. Playing football encourages children to foster positive relationships with their peers from diverse backgrounds and develops their understanding of teamwork, camaraderie and good sportsmanship. During gameplay, children learn to work together, support each other and communicate more effectively, which are skills that will translate into the classroom and when they are out in the community.
All of these things combined can build confidence and have a positive impact a child’s wellbeing. Furthermore, the discipline and competitive aspect of football often motivates children to set goals and fosters a sense of accomplishment and self-esteem in them. By participating in football, children have the opportunity to develop essential skills and values that can prepare them for success in the future. And with all of these benefits to the gameplay, is it any wonder that football is one of the beloved sports in the world?
EXPLORE FOOTBALL AUSTRALIA’S SCHOOL PROGRAMS
Ahead of the upcoming FIFA Women’s World CupTM, which is being played for the first time in Australia and New Zealand in July and August, Football Australia has developed a comprehensive school football curriculum guide, as a part of the Sporting Schools program, with the aim of sparking a love of football in students through fun activities, games and challenges; while also teaching them the fundamental physical, social and cognitive skills required to become future leaders in sport.
Festival of Football
Schools are invited to join in the excitement of the upcoming FIFA Women’s World CupTM and bring football into the classroom with Football Australia’s new curriculum aligned, teacher-delivered four- week program for primary schools – Festival of Football. The program will coincide with the FIFA Women’s World CupTMAustralia and New Zealand, meaning that school kids around Australia can experience the world game in the classroom while the Commbank Matildas take on the world.
The new program brings football into the classroom via a new curriculum-aligned resource. Festival of Football is an exciting and flexible resource designed for teachers to help Australian primary school students celebrate the fun, fitness, and friendship of playing football. Each lesson focuses on a big idea related to the interacting with others component of the Health and Physical Education curriculum, as determined by the Australian Curriculum, Assessment, and Reporting Authority.
All programs can be tailored to suit the needs of each school and programs can range from 4 to 10 sessions, running anywhere between 30-60 minutes. The programs are inclusive and available to students of all abilities. The lessons explore the application of the big idea in the context of football and provide opportunities to apply this knowledge in gameplay. The principles learnt by the students in the classroom can then be applied in active football sessions or at a Festival of Football. Furthermore, Football Australia will link local football clubs with schools to facilitate an ongoing relationship and provide further opportunity for students to continue their football journey outside of school, whether that be MiniRoos Kick Off, MiniRoos Club or Junior Football.
“As a former teacher myself, I think it’s wonderful to have a fully designed football curriculum where we can teach the students about the game itself. There’s no better time than this year to introduce football to students and I can’t wait to see how the fun, the fitness, the freedom and the friendship that can evolve from football will transform our next generation.”-Rae Dower, Technical Director Women’s Football & CommBank Junior Matildas Head Coach
The Four-Week Program Curriculum
Week 1: Explore the theme by completing the interactive lesson in the classroom.
Week 2: Apply the theme, express and illustrate in the classroom.
Week 3: Synthesize the theme and prepare for the Festival of Football.
Week 4: Execute the theme via a Festival of Football on the school oval or in the school hall.
Football Australia’s Festival of Football will coincide with the FIFA Women’s World CupTM Australia and New Zealand, where the Australian Women’s Team, the Commbank Matildas, will be competing this year.
Another way that schools can join the excitement of the FIFA Womens World CupTM is by hosting a Football Australia Football Fever event on campus. Football Fever is an engaging, free and flexible way for Australian students in a modified format of small-sided games.
The objective of Football Fever is to celebrate diversity, apply basic skills in a supportive team environment, and to further enthuse children to be life-long supporters of the world game. Football Fever can run before, during or after school on the school oval, school hall or local venue, pending school availability and timetable. Additionally, Football Fever can serve as a community event for schools, open to the involvement of parents as volunteers and spectators.
Football Fever has been developed to empower teachers to run their own intra-school tournament that replicates the FIFA Womens World CupTM. When schools register their Football Fever event with Football Australia, they will receive a free Football Fever resource that guides teachers through the organisation and delivery elements of a mini tournament; including arranging teams, event plans and playing formats.
About Sporting Schools
Sporting Schools is Australia’s largest school- based sports participation program, providing an opportunity for children to get active and connect with community sport. Football Australia has partnered with the Australian Sports Commission as the provider of football within the program. Football Australia’s programs are being offered to both primary and secondary schools across the nation, available to run before, during, or after school, in a fun, safe and educational environment. Schools can participate through Sporting Schools, or through self-funded programs and events. Each term, schools across Australia can apply for funding and grants to implement a football program for students in kindergarten to Year 8.
Across each state, Football Australia has qualified Participation Officers and local clubs ready to implement in-school and after-school programs for students of ages up to Year 8, including all-abilities programs. Using Physical Literacy principles as the core of each session guides, Football Australia has more than 200 qualified coaches that will focus on developing student’s movement skills, knowledge, and behaviours of students to gain confidence in their ability. The goal of the program is to transition students to active participants in the football community and culture – and ultimately, encourage them to become long-term fans and passionate players of the game.
Primary school program – MiniRoos
The Primary School program is designed to introduce boys and girls of all abilities, to the fundamental skills of football and physical literacy. Sessions focus on learning new skills, being active, making life-long friends and potentially unearthing the next generation of heroes on the Subway Socceroos or the CommBank Matildas.
Secondary school program
Secondary School programs are designed for students in Years 7 and 8 to further develop their fundamental movement skills in a team environment. The program is delivered in an inclusive and engaging manner, targets all skill levels, and encourages a positive view towards an active and healthy lifestyle.
Futsal in sporting schools
The Football Australia Futsal program is designed to introduce the core basic skills and match play of futsal to children from Kindergarten to Year 8 with an emphasis on fun-learning and active participation. The futsal program adheres to the Australian Curriculum and Australian Physical Literacy Framework.
Endorsed and qualified facilitators, group leaders, and teachers, provide a fun, safe, and inclusive learning environment, developing the skills and match play of children with engaging activities and games.
Futsal programs can be delivered in a variety of both indoor and outdoor settings, indoor gymnasiums, outdoor basketball courts, multi-sport courts. Futsal is the ideal option to keep students engaged in football skill development through the off-season and encourages students to be active indoors during hot or rainy seasons.
In addition, teachers can utilise new FIFA resources that specialise in post-program progression of both football and futsal for students to transition into local community competition.
Football in schools inclusive program
The Football in Schools Inclusive program is an adapted version of the MiniRoos program, catering for students with intellectual disabilities and autism. The program has been designed by Football Australia, in partnership with Special Olympics Australia, for delivery in special education environments. Coaches are purposefully trained and provided with additional resources to deliver inclusive programs and to adapt activities to suit the needs of participating students.
Teacher delivered programs
Football Australia is thrilled to provide online, interactive resources and webinars to help facilitate Teacher Delivered Football Program. Football Australia will guide schools through every step of the journey to ensure students receive the same experience as they do in the Football Australia coach-delivered programs.
CommBank Matildas Good Luck Messages
Students or schools can create a ‘good luck’ message for the CommBank Matildas at the FIFA Womens World CupTM and Football Australia will hang it up at the team hotel during the tournament for the players to read. Messages can be from an individual student, a class group or the whole school. The only requirements are that it needs to be created on a piece of paper and full of colour!
Design a football contest
Students can design their own unique footballs and potentionally score 50 of their designed footballs for their school! The winning design will be based on creativity and the winning designer will receive a signed CommBank Matildas jersey.
To book your school football program today, contact: email@example.com
To learn more about the programs, visit: https://www.footballaustralia.com.au/schools
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