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Game on: How Diverse Representation in Sports & Media Can Help Kids Win in Life

In sports, a diverse team is essential to success. You can't win if your whole team plays defense or if everyone is a goalie! It takes a variety of skills and perspectives to build a winning team.

Why a Diverse Team is Key to Winning in Sports and Life

Sports have the power to bring people together and break down barriers. By exposing children to a diverse range of athletes, sports, and sports cultures, we can help them develop a more nuanced and inclusive understanding of the world around them…all while being active and having fun! 

The same is true in life. Diverse experiences and relationships help kids better understand themselves and those around them. When kids embrace differences, it can empower them to learn better, empathize more, and ultimately engage with the world in a more confident, curious, and kind way.

Why Diverse Representation in Media Matters 

With media playing such a significant role in kids' lives, it's essential that what they watch promotes diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI). When kids see themselves and their communities reflected in the content they consume, it promotes a sense of belonging and a positive self-image. It also exposes them to various cultures and perspectives that can help them develop empathy, respect, and an understanding of others.

Inclusive media that allows kids to see themselves and learn about the experiences of others is one way to build a "team" that is better equipped to navigate challenges on and off the field. By better understanding and seeing the value in others' perspectives, kids can strengthen the skills needed to appreciate and thrive in our diverse world. 

Here are five tips for how to find and make media choices that support DEI, with a focus on sports:

  1. Look for diverse content. Seek media with diverse representation and themes about different races, cultures, abilities, and gender identities. This can include books, movies, shows, video games, and sports content.
  2. Seek out diverse creators. Sporting events with diverse commentators and hosts, stories told by diverse writers, and media made by diverse directors and producers can reflect a broader range of experiences and perspectives, especially from underrepresented groups. 
  3. Research before you choose. Use trusted resources to research the content you are considering for your child, including reading reviews, checking Common Sense Media ratings, and seeking recommendations from other parents and caregivers.
  4. Discuss the content with your child. Encourage your child to ask questions, share their thoughts and feelings, and engage in open and honest conversations about who they see and don't see on screen. 
  5. Encourage a variety of activities and content. Help your child consider a broad range of sports—to play and watch—including those that may not feel as familiar or traditional to them (or you!). This can help broaden their horizons and expose them to new experiences and perspectives.

Sensical is committed to providing a wide range of diverse, high-quality content that allows kids to see themselves while exposing them to different perspectives and cultures—content that celebrates and reflects the rich diversity of our world. Diverse representation is a critical factor in promoting healthy child development. By making conscious choices about what our kids play and watch—in sports and beyond—we help them develop into more empathetic, informed, and socially responsible individuals. 

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Sports & Education Parent Sensical