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Thursday, December 10, 2009

At end of season, DC SCORES poet-athlete sums up the experience

As the DC SCORES season wound down, Elementary School Program Coordinator Zach Elkin, who coached the Tubman Elementary School boys soccer team, got a few free minutes to ask one of his students about his experience within the program.

During a break in the action from Tubman’s Poetry Slam! rehearsal, I sat down with Christian L., a fourth-grade student at the school, and chatted with him about his DC SCORES experience.

This is Christian’s second year participating in the program, and throughout the fall season he was one of the most enthusiastic students on and off the field. He continuously displayed excitement, energy, and charisma, and I began to realize the impact DC SCORES had on him. In talking with him before the fall’s culminating event, I wanted to recap the season with him and try to understand the importance of DC SCORES in his life.  

What was your favorite or most memorable part of this season?

"I loved all the soccer games and I can’t wait for the Poetry Slam!. Soccer is really fun because you practice a lot and get better every day. Writing is good because you can get help from the coaches and you get to write all the words you think of in your head. The Poetry Slam! is fun because you get to read your poems in front of everybody!"

If you weren’t doing DC SCORES, what would you do after school?

"I would be at home doing nothing. My life wouldn’t be the same without DC SCORES."

What did you learn by participating in DC SCORES this season?

"I learned how to brainstorm ideas and goals in my head and then put them on paper. For soccer, I learned it’s not just about winning or losing – it’s about working together. Coaches always pick captains at the beginning of the week. It’s really about what you do and how you act in the game and after it’s over."

This season’s theme was Leadership. Did you learn anything about becoming a leader?

"I learned that being a leader always has responsibility. Like when captains told the team to remember their soccer clothes for the game. When people forgot their uniforms, we wouldn’t have fun because the whole team couldn’t play. I was never a captain but I still reminded people to bring their soccer clothes. Being a leader should be fun."

It seems like you had an awesome time this fall. Will you do DC SCORES again in the spring?

"Of course – I want to get to the playoffs! But it’s not really about that. It’s about teamwork and sharing, passing the ball and sharing poetry. I want to keep talking about our poems and learning how to change them and make them better."

After you graduate from Tubman, will you still want to do DC SCORES?

"Yeah in middle school – but it’s going to be harder because you can’t goof off. It’s going to be pretty cool."

When you’re an adult, what will you remember about DC SCORES?

"Just learning about responsibility. I’ll always have the memories of my teammates and the coaches. I will remember the best life that I had with DC SCORES."

-- Written by Zach Elkin, Elementary School Program Coordinator.

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