Sports as Social Studies

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• Part 2: Geography and Economics
Part 3: History and Cultures

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Part 1: The Importance of Sports

Sports are an important part of just about every society, every country, every part of our planet. In one way or another, everyone is involved in sports or some sort, whether they're playing or watching or just know someone who does either.

Sports come in many sizes. Golf is an individual sport. Even though golfers play on the same course, they are really competing against one another only with their scores. Unlike tennis, in which one player must beat the other to finish a match, golf features each player against every other player, with the one who takes the fewest strokes to sink the ball into 18 holes declared the winner.

Baseball, basketball, and soccer are team sports. Teams of five, seven, and nine square off against each other, with team members helping each other to win as a team.

Sports are played for fun or for money (or sometimes both). Just about every sport has both professionals (those who compete for money) and amateurs (those who compete not for money). Many amateurs who are really good at their sport become professionals.

Sports bring people together and also set people apart. They bring together in that a team (usually professional but sometimes college or amateur) can inspire many fans to cheer for that team. And each team has its own set of fans. So, when two teams compete against each other or two individual athletes go at each other, the fan base is divided in two. Such classic rivalries as Yankees-Red Sox in baseball and Lakers-Celtics in basketball can last for years and years and years, with fan traditions being passed on from generation to generation.

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Social Studies for Kids
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David White