DeShawn is a friendly but shy fourth grader at Woodward Academy. As a Junior Coach, he would usually lead jump rope or hula-hoops, and often end up against the wall just watching most kids play. I noticed that he would always watch the other students play basketball. He often looked as if he wanted to join the game, but never did.
One day, I approached him and asked if he wanted to play. He said he did, but he was nervous because he wasn’t as good as his fellow classmates. After recess most days, I allowed him to shoot the ball and practice. I told him it was all about trying and doing your best. After a few weeks, I encouraged him to join the 3-Lines Basketball game at recess. He started to enjoy himself and even scored the shot that kept his team in the game.
These days, DeShawn is leading 3-Lines basketball as a Junior Coach. I even gave him a timer to help him keep track of minutes played and to learn to do a fair countdown when the game becomes really intense. The other students love him as a Junior Coach. Recently, DeShawn went to try-outs for the school’s elementary co-ed basketball team, and he made it! I’m very proud of him and all that he’s accomplished this year!
-Coach Kemp, Woodward Academy