Grade Level: Elementary/Middle
Duration: Four 30-minute sessions
Objective: To introduce fundamental soccer skills, teamwork, and reflection through engaging warm-up videos, lead-up games, and cool-down activities.
- Soccer balls
- Small goals (optional)
- Projector and screen (for day four)
Day 1: Zombie Soccer Red Light Green Light
Warm-up Video: Begin with a soccer warm-up video that includes dynamic stretches and ball control exercises.
Lead-Up Game: Zombie Soccer
- Divide the players into two groups: zombies and survivors.
- The survivors each have a soccer ball and stand on one side of the playing area.
- The zombies stand in the center of the field without a soccer ball.
- When the game starts (green light), survivors attempt to dribble their soccer ball to the other side of the field without getting tagged by the zombies.
- When the video or coach calls “red light,” everyone must freeze. Any survivor caught moving after “red light” is turned into a zombie.
- Continue playing until all survivors become zombies or for a set time limit.
- The last survivor wins the round.
Cool-Down Activity: Circle of Compliments
- Gather the players in a circle.
- Each player takes turns giving a compliment to the person on their left, related to something positive observed during the game or warm-up.
- Encourage specific and sincere compliments.
- Go around the circle until everyone has had a chance to share.
Day 2: This or That
Warm-up Video: Show warm up video
Lead-Up Game: This or That
- Set up two cones a few yards apart to create a “this” zone and a “that” zone.
- Divide the players into two teams.
- The video or coach calls out a soccer-related “this or that” choice (e.g., Messi or Ronaldo, dribbling or passing).
- Players must quickly dribble their soccer balls to the corresponding zone based on their choice and perform the skill on the video.
Cool-Down Activity: Soccer Storytime
- Have the players sit in a circle.
- Ask each player to share their favorite moment from the “This or That” game and describe why that moment was special or fun.
- Players can take turns sharing their stories, creating a positive and reflective atmosphere.
Day 3: 4 Corners
Warm-up Video: Start with a warm-up video
Lead-Up Game: 4 Corners
- Set up four cones in a square formation, with one player standing in each corner.
- Each corner is assigned a number (1, 2, 3, 4).
- Students will dribble in space.
- When timer starts counting down, student dribbles to a corner.
- After the countdown each corner gets awarded, deducted or receives 0 points.
Cool-Down Activity: Stretch and Relaxation
- Lead the players through a series of gentle stretching exercises to help them cool down and relax their muscles.
- Incorporate deep breathing exercises and mindfulness techniques to promote relaxation and focus.
- Play soothing music in the background to enhance the relaxation experience.
Day 4: Projector Shooting Game
Warm-up Video: Begin with a warm-up video
Lead-Up Game: Projector Shooting Game
- Set up a small goal at one end of the field.
- Use a projector to project a moving target or animated image onto a screen or wall.
- Players take turns dribbling towards the projector screen and attempting to shoot the ball at the projected target.
- Award points for accuracy and creativity (e.g., bonus points for hitting specific areas of the target).
- Rotate players so that everyone gets a chance to shoot and score.
- Keep score, and the player with the most points wins the game.
Cool-Down Activity: Team Reflection
- Gather the players in a circle.
- Ask them to share one thing they learned or improved upon during the shooting game.
- Encourage players to discuss how teamwork and communication played a role in their success.
- This activity promotes self-reflection and reinforces the importance of teamwork in soccer.
By incorporating warm-up videos, lead-up games, and cool-down activities into each session, this four-day soccer unit provides a comprehensive and engaging experience for young players to develop fundamental soccer skills and teamwork while reflecting on their experiences.