At a children's racing carnival in Australia, swimmers in the past have competed for a team, not for themselves, because of, you guessed it, adults worried about their precious self-esteem. But this year, there will be competitive events as well. Guess why:
Nearly 300 children have registered for individual events at the carnival.
"I know that some people advocate sanitising children's sport to remove any competitive element, but the fact that the children themselves have asked for this event indicates that this is something that kids want," Ms Stevens said yesterday.
At least a few of the adults, including Office for Recreation and Sport director Paul Anderson, are as smart as the youngs: "Kids need to play just for the sake of playing but they also need to have opportunities to compete," he said. "They can learn the lessons that come from that."