The gloom cleared by Saturday morning, and KCTL was on the courts at Marcy, Tompkins and Lafayette. We had over 75 kids between the three sites and some 15+ volunteers. Turn out was great.
During class, we had kids working on agility and dexterity drills. Some of the older and/or more skilled players engaged in match play. The match play is a great opportunity to teach the kids the rules of the game as well as good sportsmanship like shaking hands, not over-celebrating on a good point and on the other side, not shutting down when losing. It also gets them psyched because it's a good reminder that they'll be playing matches against the kids of other sites' at the end-of-year jamboree.
The volunteers met up after class to talk about the good and the bad. Michael handed out some chock-full-of-good-information USTA drill manuals that also had great teaching guidelines when working with kids. KCTL is dedicated to having volunteers that aren't just great at tennis, but also great at mentoring. We were also reminded that we should always reward effort and not winning.
Tiffany brought up a great tip/game that the kids play in school to help keep a station organized and listening. If things get unruly, the instructor says, "Eyes on who?" and the kids know to respond with "Eyes on Instructor's Name." It's a simple way to bring attention back to the instructor/adult.
At the end of the volunteers meeting, Michael talked about the super, awesome fundraiser KCTL will be hosting in July. More details to come soon!