Coubertin Quote for Jul, 24
I would ask you to be convinced of just one thing: that your children have to play.

As he sought to change the world, beginning with the world of education in France, Baron Pierre de Coubertin made one of his first emotional appeals to parents.  It was widely believed in France in the 1880s that children were overworked in school.  They had no sport or gym class, but they did have a word for overwork:  surmenage, which the Baron said was on everyone’s lips by 1887 when he began to write about it.  In 1889, his book, "English Education in France," contained a chapter titled “The Cure for Overworking.”  At the most basic level, Coubertin proposed to all French parents that the cure for the current crisis was play—and the acceptance of play, of course, would lead them toward the conclusion that French education needed sport, games and exercise for all children.

“I would ask you to be convinced of just one thing: that your children have to play. They do not play because they do not know how to play ... When you let children out telling them to play, there are various kinds of games they play. These games have nothing at all to do with the ones we want to introduce into education, which require different efforts altogether. Regardless of how easy it may seem, do you really think that you would manage to kick a big ball with your foot on your very first try? Just try it and see.”