It’s the most wonderful time of the year. No, we don’t mean Christmas, Thanksgiving, or St. Patrick’s Day. No, we’re talking about football. The NFL season is right around the corner, and with it comes fantasy football. We’re all neck deep in statistics and metrics, reading articles, and keeping up to date on injuries as we prepare for our drafts.
In reality, you can swap out football for basketball, soccer, rugby, baseball, etc.
What Can Fantasy Sports Teach Kids?
Most of us probably think of fantasy football as an excuse to watch every game, track every box score, and talk trash to our buddies. But it’s also a useful tool for divorced dads.
With the kids going back to school, divorced dads often have a tough time. Fantasy football can serve as a way to bond with your children, teach them useful things, and have fun at the same time.
1 – Decision Making and Critical Thinking
Critical thinking and decision making lie at the heart of fantasy football. Players examine statistics and compare numbers. They set rosters based on team and individual matchups. Even details like where the game takes place also come into play.
To perform well, you have to absorb and interpret a huge amount of information and make choices based on what you see.
You must predict how a player will perform based on his past performance and the performance of his opponent. This can help kids hone problem-solving abilities and promote the use of reason.
2 – Math
It’s not always easy to get kids to embrace math. Some kids take to it, but others struggle. Fantasy football offers a way to work on math skills in an entertaining, practical, hands-on way.
Kids have to use addition, subtraction, and multiples of three, six, and seven. Certain situations even afford the chance to learn concepts from algebra.
They can learn to evaluate scenarios to determine how many points you need to win or if an opponent can stage a comeback. All of this enhances memory, math skills, and critical thinking.
3 – Prediction
Using data from previous weeks, fantasy football players predict and project what will happen in upcoming games. You must look at past performance, account for any potential problems, and anticipate the outcome.
This helps develop comprehension skills and logical thinking. In making predictions, you must justify why you think this will come to pass.
It may initially be intuitive, but over time, kids can learn to quantify their reasoning. And since predictions often don’t come true, it also provides a good life lesson that even the best guesses aren’t always right.
4 – Patience and Dedication
Fantasy football isn’t all about immediate gratification. Once you set your lineup, you have to wait until Sunday (and sometimes Monday) for the results. Plus, the season lasts more or less an entire NFL season.
If nothing else, it’s an exercise in patience and dedication. Completing a full season takes time, perseverance, and commitment. All useful life skills for kids to develop.
5 – Fantasy Football And Bonding
It’s important for divorced dads to remain an active part of children’s lives, and fantasy football provides one opportunity. Friendly competition fosters engagement.
It gives you a built-in activity and can lead to more phone calls, text messages, and contact.
As you talk about players, games, stats, and rosters, you strengthen bonds and connections. It’s an entertaining, productive way to interact and connect with your children.
Millions of people play fantasy football every season. It’s something of a national obsession. For some, it’s a fun way to pass the time. In other cases, it helps make games more engaging and makes you invested in teams and players you might not otherwise pay attention to.
But it also provides a number of potential benefits for divorced dads. Fantasy football may help children learn important life lessons and hone useful skills. If you’re feeling a bit estranged from your kids, it can even offer an opportunity for additional bonding.
One of our favorite fantasy football resources for beginners:
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