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Raising children in Australia: Not involved in sports, not yet Australian
First of all here are a couple of lines about the guest in a recent article posted by SBS Vietnamese: Mr. Le Son Anh Hoang is the parent of Le Tam Nguyen (English name is Cherry, 14 years old, living in Victoria). Cherry went to Australia to settle down when she started secondary school. I have been playing table tennis since I was 6 years old when I was in first grade. Cherry has participated in movement competitions until the national youth championship in Vietnam, the international youth tournament in Singapore. Cherry currently trains regularly at the Loops Table Tennis potty club in Sunshine, Victoria. Cherry's highest achievements to date in Australia are winning the U/15 women's singles, the U/17 women's doubles and the 2nd place of the U/17 women's singles at the Victoria Open. April 2021.
Mr. Le Hoang shared his experience of leading his children to professional sports and the role of physical training in the holistic development of children in Australia.
SBS: As a teenage girl born in Vietnam, how has sport helped Cherry integrate into her new life in Australia? Le Hoang: Since childhood, Cherry has always been a lively, alert and sociable girl. Thanks to playing table tennis, children practice teamwork and often help others. Integrating into a new life in Australia with Cherry at first also had a lot of confusion about the culture and language of communication. At first, Cherry was not familiar with the style of training as well as the environment of the tournament in Australia, but thanks to her perseverance and constant striving, now Cherry has been able to practice with her friends. Australia's national youth team. SBS: If parents find that their child is particularly gifted in a certain sport, how should they help their child practice and foster further in Australia? Le Hoang: If you pay attention, you will see that from a young age, children are always encouraged to exercise and get used to physical activities. When children have started to walk and run, parents should gradually familiarise them with many simple games such as playing with balls such as kicking, tossing, shooting, running, jumping, climbing, walking, cycling, etc. scooter, swimming, martial arts, playing chess. When children reach about 5 years of age or older, children can start trying and participating in many sports: basketball, footy, badminton, table tennis, netball, volleyball, hockey, football... Choose which subject to choose. Depending on the child's ability, family traditions and parents need to accompany their children throughout this journey. Sports venues can be found at your local council, the school your child attends, or you can find information online. If you want to pursue a long-term professional career for your child, parents can learn more at state or national sports federations. For example, Cherry, Hoang's daughter, is now widely known in the table tennis federation Victoria (TTV) or the Australian table tennis federation (TTA) SBS: If your child is gifted, should parents send their child to a sports school? Does Mr. Hoang intend for his daughter to follow the path of a professional athlete? Le Hoang: Australian schools attach great importance to sports and physical training. Schools often organize teams to compete against each other in the region, or even award scholarships to children who have a special talent for sports and contribute to achievements at the national or international level, for example. There will also be schools specializing in sports, training for athletes to compete professionally. However, with Cherry, at a young age, personality is forming and can still learn a lot, as a parent, I always want my child to keep a balance between playing sports and learning culture as well as many other skills. other abilities in life. SBS: How do you see Australia in its education system? Le Hoang: According to official statistics, in Australia currently about 40% of children aged 5-14 do not participate in any sports activities, but instead spend more time in one or several other activities. such as doing homework and extra lessons, playing video games, using the internet, watching TV. School sports are currently very important in Australia because of many benefits for children such as: Reduce the risk of obesity; improve cardiovascular health; Well developed bones, muscles, joints, tendons. Enhances balance and coordination between body parts (eg limbs, eyes and brain in table tennis). Relax your mind for a clear mind, relieve headaches and back pain. Helps sleep better. Good for mental health, boosts self-confidence. Expand social relationships. Enhance personal development skills such as teamwork and leadership qualities. In Australia, in sports families, parents often accompany and support their children, as well as create bonds across generations. Participating in sports activities helps children and parents to have more social relationships and better integrate into the community. Because children in Australia grow up from a young age and are exposed to so many sports, most Australians are very fond of, even passionate about, sports, have a noble spirit, respect each other when playing sports, have culture of enjoying and promoting competition is very civilised. The facilities for sports in Australia are well invested and also create an environment for young talents to develop. Personally, I see that through sports, parents will have the opportunity to teach their children virtues such as chivalry, respect for rules, respect for opponents, perseverance and not giving up... I see in Australia families with a sports tradition, parents often accompany and support their children as well as create bonds across generations. Participating in sports activities also helps children and parents to have more social relationships and better integrate into the community. SBS: This is very different from Vietnam when parents in Vietnam do not respect sports properly, children who go to the street to play football or play football are said to be spoiled, not worried about studying. Being good at sports doesn't equal good math. But in Australia, good sport can be a priority gift, a new career-path. Le Hoang: That's right. Differences in the cultural environment and investment in facilities and support for sports are also different in Australia and Vietnam. Therefore, middle-class parents in big cities in Vietnam may find that letting their children play sports has no future and the trade-off is too great. Meanwhile in Australia, children are encouraged to play sports from a young age, if they are good, they are supported to contribute to Australian sports, represent international competitions but can still pursue other professional careers. . It is easy to see that sports facilities in Australia are much better and more complete than in Vietnam. However, in my opinion, school sports are mostly just to help children familiarize themselves with these subjects at the most basic level possible, helping to create and raise awareness about the importance of physical activity. just sports. Since the academic environment should be one of freedom to pursue and develop, it is still important that children's choices and pursuits as well as support from parents are the main ones. SBS: Mr. Hoang's share as a parent about helping his children to practice physically and engage in sports if they are gifted? Le Hoang: In my opinion, parents have an accompanying role to support and this is very important in the process of children getting used to and pursuing sports. It is very expensive to invest time, money, effort and energy to follow your children to play sports. Personally, I always accompany Cherry when my children play table tennis, from practice to competition, talking with coaches, other parents as well as communicating and coordinating social relationships related to this sport. In my opinion, sports are also an opportunity for families to bond and parents to spend more time. Parents accompany their children in both training and competition, whether it is a movement or a peak. These are very healthy physical activities that help children learn better.