Coaching Gen. Alpha


Been a bit of chat about coaching kids in recent times, so for those who work with kids this might be useful...

Generation Z and Generation Alpha are a fairly unique breed to work with. They are used to almost instant gratification and have shorter attention spans than previous generations. The YT/TikTok culture means that if something doesn't hold their attention after 10 seconds, something else will be served up which could (and the algorithms learn what gets watched and engaged with and so serve up more of it, thus repeating and refining the cycle). When they game, they don't have to stop and listen or read before they play, computer games are designed so that the learning curve is shallow and any "instructions" are delivered in game, whilst playing - there is no reading the instruction manual before you get to have a go. Games are also designed to meet the different motivations/needs of kids in different ways - cooperating, competing, collecting, puzzle solving, levelling up - all of which help meet differing motivational needs. We need to start thinking more about what kids today need/want and how their world is shaped and less about how we have delivered sessions traditionally if we want to fully engage them. If you speak the language of kids and be brief, be bright and be gone, you'll get more out of Gen. Z and Gen. Alpha.


Having spent quite a lot of time teaching kids age 8-12, I agree with your thoughts. Break up skills in to small units that can be taught, practiced and learned such that kids can feel they have leveled up in a short period of time (15-20 minutes).

If one kid gets it, they often enjoy helping their peers level up, and kids who are having trouble often prefer to receive instruction from their peers than adults. You can take advantage of that in cooperative/competitive games.