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Story | Research
19 November 2019

The power of sport


Creating positive behaviors through sport at Doha Learning Days

Generation Amazing is using sport as a vehicle to address social issues, while helping to affect positive change within the community through football, at WISE’s Doha Learning Days festival.

Through a series of fun and engaging activities, including mini matches, football table tennis, and quizzes, the team at Generation Amazing – part of the Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy (SC) – is helping to teach students powerful lifelong lessons.

Michael Richardson, Local and Regional Delivery Senior Specialist, SC, said: “Our particular focus is how to communicate social messages through football.
“In this case, we are focusing on gender equality and diversity. The young people that are taking part in Doha Learning Days – our role within the bigger picture – is to provide people with an opportunity to understand how sport is used to communicate social issues and develop social skills, such as confidence and negotiation abilities.

Speaking about the children that participated, Michael said: “They’ve come into one space; they didn’t know each before. They’ve all been put on different teams, they’ve all been given different roles, they’ve all had to negotiate their way out of decisions they may not have liked.

“They’ve all had to participate together on small pitches, they’ve all had to obey rules that they’ve made within their peer groups. It’s been done really nicely, with a lot of energy, and a lot of interaction.

“Everybody learns in different ways, and Doha Learning Days is a great showcase of this.”

The Generation Amazing activities which have run throughout Doha Learning Days at Education City’s Green Spine have been open to both girls and boys. Nasser Al Dirhem, a student at Qatar Leadership Academy – part of Qatar Foundation’s Pre-University Education - said: “I learned how to collaborate with people better, especially when we are playing against each other. We learned about sportsmanship and the importance of playing fairly.”

The importance of using sport as a vehicle to encourage positive learning behaviors in children has been a reoccurring theme at Doha Learning Days.

LiveLife Qatar is also offering a range of fun and engaging activities, such as obstacle courses, designed to encourage team building in children. Damian Ruatara, from LiveLife Qatar, said: “Through three separate group activities, here at Education City, we are trying to promote teamwork among children, while helping to build stronger leadership and communication skills.”

Doha Learning Days is Qatar’s inaugural experiential learning festival. The six-day event, ending on November 19, has brought together more than 50 local and international entities and is organized by Qatar Foundation initiative WISE, has been designed by the community, for the community.

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