The Athletics-Academics Connection, and Why Preparing for Finals is a Lot Like Practicing for the Big Game

This post was contributed by Hollie Marjanovic.

Coach Russell Marsalis partnered with Hollie Marjanovic during lunch on Monday of finals week to give upper school students a very different kind of pep talk.

What better person to present on the topic of stress in a “high stakes” situation than Russell Marsalis, who coached in (and won) his first basketball state championship last March?!  Coach Marsalis did a fantastic job of explaining that every game you play is just a game–whether it is the first game of the season with no one watching or a state championship. He advocated for students to treat them all the same and give just as much effort.  This is also true of exams–in the end they are just a big test; do not let the hype around them get you psyched out of your mind.  Additionally, always make your practices tougher than the games; that way, you will never encounter a situation in a game that you did not already anticipate.  Students left the session empowered to ask the questions to teachers and classmates to help you them understand and put in the time and mental effort needed to make those study sessions count. So the next time you need a little academic reinforcement, consider partnering with one of our athletic pros in the ARC. It turns out that coaching has a whole lot in common with solid teaching and learning.

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