CAISSA for the Win

This week/end we’ve been busy hosting the CAISSA regional sports tournament.  With visiting schools from Venezuela, Dominican Republic, Trinidad & Tobago, and Cayman Islands it’s been a great experience for everyone involved.  

As the days rolled on I took a few moments to sit back and reflect on everything that I’ve seen and heard during CAISSA, it’s been interesting.  I want to share some of the observations I’ve made and how they are a positive for, not only our community but all of those who’ve been involved.

  1. School isn’t exclusively about textbooks and exams!  The lessons that have been learned during this event have been incredible.  There have been lessons on sportsmanship (with examples of the good as well as, unfortunately, the bad).  We’ve seen our AC students come out and support their classmates (or older role models) and cheer positively for the efforts of all the athletes, the positive experience of enjoying a sporting event is not to be underappreciated!  While all of this excitement has been happening we’ve also seen the discipline of many of our students to attend classes and, in some cases, take tests despite the energy of these athletic contests happening just steps away.  
  2. Bonds created by hosting students from other schools last for a long time!  As the week progressed I saw more and more of our students walking around, chatting, and just hanging out with kids from the other schools.  Many times the connections between these students were formed when one student-athlete played the role of host to the other.  Initially, hosting guest student-athletes was a cost saving measure but now it’s grown to so much more than that.  Living under the same roof, if only for a couple days, creates a bond between these young adults that is stronger than the competition.  It’s a unique experience, one that helps these kids realize that it’s not all about the numbers on the scoreboard at the end of the game.  
  3. Hard work prevailing isn’t just something from Hollywood, it actually happens!  Watching some of the games over the course of the tournament, it became very obvious as to who “should” win particular matchups.  However, in a number of cases, the “underdog” showed that hard work and perseverance can win out over a more “talented” opponent.  Teamwork, effort, and fundamentals became more than buzz-words, they became rallying cries and motivation!   As educators, how can we transfer that attitude into the classroom?
  4. Attitude is everything!  The last time we hosted CAISSA I was blown away by the effort and dedication of our JV girls Volleyball team as they battled against all the varsity squads.  Once again, the JV teams have impressed beyond my imagination. The girls soccer team has been competitive and fought hard against every opponent they’ve faced, never hanging their heads or giving up.  Our boys on the basketball court have faced, whether fairly or not, the best that each of the varsity teams have had to offer.  Whether a tough opponent, a bad shooting day, or injured teammates, our JV athletes have fought through and left every ounce of energy on the court/field.

CAISSA has been a nice interlude for our community.  The positive atmosphere of support and hard work from our athletes and community has been wonderful to see.  It’s not all about academics when it comes to school, CAISSA  was a nice reminder of that fact.  We’re helping transform young adults into adults, that extends well beyond the books!!

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