It’s like telling little boys not to make a gun out of a stick
I think I’ve said somewhere before on this site that the reason for no-score leagues is not to protect the egos of the kids — it’s to make the parents shut up. The kids know the score.
For example, my 3-year-old daughter and my 6-year-old son. The other night we were playing a game sent home by my 6-year-old’s kindergarten teacher, a game in which you advance spaces based on your ability to read a word on a card. My 3-year-old, who does not know how to read, insisted on joining us.
My 6-year-old’s nose was out of joint because I was helping her read the words and advance. My 3-year-old’s nose was out of joint because I wouldn’t let her jump ahead spaces in front of her brother. Both of them were out of joint when it appeared there was a winner. “I won,” my 6-year-old said. “No, I’M THE WINNER!!!!!” my 3-year-old screamed.
As you parents of young children know, there truly are no winners here.
Now, I know this doesn’t always carry over to organized sports. But the kids who care about winning really care about it, no matter what you do to try to make them care. Also, those who don’t care about winning really don’t care about it.
That’s something we parents should remember and understand, and thus adjust accordingly our expectations and what we need to do to meet our children’s post-game needs. In either case, ice cream works exceedingly well.