Three Easy Ways You Can Help Deerfield Show the Best School Spirit and Sportsmanship During Choate Day

by Lesley Koeppel P ’14, ’15, ’18
VP Deerfield Parents Network

Deerfield’s longstanding rivalry with Choate Rosemary Hall dates back to 1922 and continues to this day—culminating each fall on “Choate Day,” when students, family, and friends gather to watch the last fall games of the season. Every other year, Deerfield hosts this exciting, competitive, and friendly-spirited day when we get to don our green and cheer for Deerfield and being “worthy of our heritage.”

In an effort to achieve the most healthy, spirited, and positive experience where we, as hosts, get to “show off” all that makes Deerfield and the DA community so special, we are asking you for your help. In the past few years, our most positive side was not always demonstrated, and some may have lost sight of the important lessons of hard work, respect, and sportsmanship both on and off the field.

When having the honor of hosting Choate Day on our campus, as we will on Saturday, November 11, all members of the Deerfield community have an even greater responsibility to be leaders in sharing the exciting and constructive aspects of school rivalries. As adults, we have the opportunity to be positive role models by exhibiting good sportsmanship and appropriate behavior—making this positive behavior contagious. To that end, we offer you these three simple suggestions in enlisting your help:

  1. Speak with your child before Choate Day and share with them your expectations about keeping cheers positively focused on boosting up Deerfield, rather than tearing down Choate. Also ask them to refrain from criticizing officials, coaches, and players. You cannot assume that your child inherently knows all of this, especially during the heat of the moment. The more clearly you define your expectations, the more they will understand the boundaries of what is acceptable.
  2. Model good host behavior for all students to see. An easy way to do this is to recognize good performances by members of either team; wish a Choate visitor “good luck” as they cheer on their team; greet Choate visitors with a smile and a, “Hi! Welcome to Deerfield!” Invite them into the hospitality tent for some coffee or to warm up; assist them if they need directions to the restroom, etc. Whether or not Deerfield wins on the field, we will certainly win off the field by demonstrating that we are a welcoming and inviting community.
  3. If you hear negative or mean-spirited cheering from Deerfield students, please find a faculty member who can quickly remind students about how to be good competitors and hosts.

We look forward to a great day of spirited rivalry and healthy competition, and with your help, we certainly will achieve this goal!

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