Sportsmanship Lesson for young Canucks and Bruins fans

Kind behaviour is even more impressive and appreciated when it appears in the aftermath of something unpleasant. Vancouver has fortunately witnessed some remarkably fine behaviour after the unfortunate post-Stanley Cup Final game street riot.  This article appeared in the June 28, 2011 edition of the Vancouver Sun:

A valuable lesson in community, sportsmanship

Elementary school students exchange letters with a Boston school to congratulate them on the Bruins’ Stanley Cup win


Students at a Langley elementary school have represented Canucks fans in a show of good sportsmanship that involved pens, paper, and some creativity.

“Vancouverites are good sports but a few troublemakers made us look kind of bad. Vancouver is not a bad city. Great job on your win.”

That was one of more than 200 letters and postcards that Grade 1 to 5 students from R.C. Garnett Demonstration elementary school wrote and couriered to students at Eliot K-8 school in Boston last Tuesday.

Jessica Baldwin, an eightyear-old Grade 2 student, drew a picture of the Canucks logo and the Boston logo shaking their cartoon hands on her letter.

She wrote: “My name is Jessica and my school is R.C. Garnett. The Bruins played a good game, congratulations.”

Baldwin said she felt bad and disappointed after watching the Canucks lose the Stanley Cup to the Boston Bruins on June 15.

She saw a bit of the riots after the game before she was sent to bed by her parents.

“I was scared,” she recalled. But she regained her spirits after writing letters to congratulate the winning team.

“I was excited,” she said. “Because I like to write and draw. It made me happy.”

The Langley school wanted to help the students learn from Vancouver’s loss and the ensuing riots.

“We wanted to teach them how to deal with losing graciously, to use sportsmanship and to move forward in a way that allows us to be positive citizens,” said principal Ute Goetzke.

So Lorraine Baldwin, Jessica Baldwin’s mom and co-president of the parent advisory council, came up with the idea of a little pen-pal exchange.

“It popped into my head while walking to school that we should get the kids to send notes to kids their own age and say: good job, we’re sad, but you guys did great,” she said. “I was impressed by how much they embraced the idea.”

She added: “The biggest lesson is about community and kindness.

“We’re all part of a community of hockey fans and kids around the world,” she said. “If we’re all kind to each other, no matter what we’re feeling, we’re all going to be in a better place.”

The students haven’t heard back from their pen-pals at Eliot school yet, but the return letters are on their way.

The students at Eliot school in Grades 3 and 5 wrote back last Friday to reciprocate their congratulatory remarks, according to the Boston Herald.

Brian Murat, a nine-yearold student at Eliot, drew the black-and-gold B’s emblem on his card. He knew about the riots in Vancouver.

“They reacted a little bit overboard,” Murat told the Boston Herald.

“They shouldn’t have done all those things. They should have had good sportsmanship.”

Holly McPartlin, a third-grade teacher at Eliot school, told the Herald that the letter exchange was helpful for the kids.

“It’s really important for kids to understand what it means to be a good sport,” she said. “It’s a life lesson.”


© Copyright (c) The Vancouver Sun

1 Response to “Sportsmanship Lesson for young Canucks and Bruins fans”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s



Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 12 other followers


%d bloggers like this: