25 Apr Swimming Lessons Improves Children’s Maths Results
Swimming classes help children, especially those between ages 11 to 13, boost their maths grades, a study by UCL has revealed.
Research has shown that children who take part in organised sports and physical activities were one and a half times more likely to reach higher than expected grades in their maths test at the end primary school at age 11.
Researchers also claimed that the sense of achievement children experience while engaging in activities like swimming and dancing motivates them to do well in their academic studies as well. The study, which was carried out by NatCen Social Research, Newcastle University and ASK Research, analysed information on more than 6,400 English children born in 2000-01.
The study’s lead investigator, Dr Emily Tanner, of NatCen, explained the link between engaging in sports and other extra-curricular activities and increasing grades in maths. She said: “The chance of experiencing success in sports raises pupils’ confidence and self-esteem. Activities like after school clubs can help a child value school in a new way and establish stronger relationships with staff.”
She said sports also enhanced softer skills, like social skills and generated a positive experience of school which in return made children apply themselves harder in their academic studies. She explained: “Social skills are important for learning.”
In sports activities, children are mixing with a different group of children from the ones they interact with in class. The relationship with social skills can be carried through to their academic studies. “For children who may have had a negative experience in their academic learning, this provides a more positive experience.”
The study also found that among disadvantaged children, those who attended after school clubs also fared better than their peers who didn’t take part in such groups.
They achieved an average of two points higher in their tests at the end of primary for English, maths and science, researches said.