Euro 2020: Takeley Primary School pupils celebrate sportsmanship in wake of Italy's win over England
Pupils at Takeley Primary School celebrated sportsmanship in the wake of England's Euro 2020 final defeat by Italy.
Like most of the rest of the country, Year 2 pupils in Elder class were disappointed that the Three Lions did not lift the trophy at Wembley on Sunday July 11.
But while some adults took to social media to racially abuse Marcus Rashford, Jadon Sancho and Bukayo Saka, who missed penalties in the shoot-out, the children, aged six and seven, wrote to coach Gareth Southgate and his squad to congratulate England on coming second in a tough tournament.
Teacher Jeannine Dooley explained: "We were all a little deflated when we arrived at school [on Monday]. The results were perhaps not what we hoped for, but Elder class reflected on the team's achievements to reach the final.
"We wrote letters of support and praise to the players, celebrating that they had represented England in a fantastic way and to not feel disappointed. We related these lessons to our own lives."
The next day, football was still a hot topic and Ms Dooley suggested her students take the next step.
"I asked the children if they felt ready to congratulate the winning team. How, although it may be challenging to do so, it's the right and kind thing to do. Elder class children agreed and we discussed good sportsmanship. We talked about finding joy for others and how we can celebrate the success of others.
"I'm so proud of the children. The discussions we had were rich and they've learned valuable life lessons through this event."
On Wednesday (July 14) the class celebrated Italy's win and cultural diversity by making and eating pizzas.