Officiating Fundamentals (U06 to U09)
ORGANIZE - The referee needs to organize the start of a game. Talk to both coaches to agree upon the length of the game and who will keep track of the time. Choose sides for the U-06 & U-07 games. Use a coin flip (with team captains) to choose sides for U8-U9 games.
WHISTLE - Use your whistle to start and stop the game. All kids listen to the whistle and it shows that you are in charge.
CONTROL - Most refereeing at this level is directed to restarting the game after the ball goes out of bounds. Generally, the ref does not call fouls. Ref spends most of the time near the middle of the field and blows the whistle when the ball goes out. Most activity is when ball comes back into play: Throw Ins, Goal Kicks, and Corner Kicks. Ref should clearly state the play and guesture the direction with an arm. "Throw In, Orange, this way!"
THROW INS - Please tell kids which way the throw is going. Please stop play with a whistle blow if the throw is incorrect. Kids learn quickly if they are asked to redo a bad throw. Explain the issue and redo.
GOAL KICKS - Tell the kids "Goal Kick. Ball right there." and point to where it should go. Most goals are scored on "failed" goal kicks that go directly to the opposition. If this starts to happen too much, feel free to help the kicking team a bit. Back the opponents back a bit. Tell the kicker "Ok, Big Kick now."
CORNER KICKS - Most kids need this clarified for them. "Orange kicking towards this goal."
COMPLIMENT - Talking to the players show that you are engaged and know more about the game than they do.
FOULS - Only call the obvious fouls. Kids start to use their arms to gain possesion around U-08. First timers could be warned by the referee. Usually, this is all you need to do. Though, don't let the game get unsafe.