The ALL NEW home of Darien Junior Field Hockey (DJFH). The new home of youth field hockey in Darien, CT. Go Darien Field Hockey! Go Blue Wave! Go DJFH!

Home
 
 
My my My my
 
 
 
 
 
 

Frequently Asked Questions

Darien Junior Field Hockey is a new program.  We anticipate many questions.  If you don't see the answer to your question below, please Contact DJFH

 

Quick Reference

We've grouped questions by topic.  Click topic below to jump to a section, or scroll down for a full list of FAQs.

Program Design

Staff & Organization

Travel Teams

Other Policies

Logistics & Financials

 

 

Program Design

Q: What are the dates of the season?  Do I need to come back early from my summer vacation?

A: Due to COVID-related decision-making and associated delays, we (and all other youth sports programs in Darien) are still awaiting fall field space allocations.  At this point in time, we can say for certain that the season will start no sooner than Monday, August 31, 2020 for our athletes in grades 5-8.  Athletes in grades 1-4 will start after Labor Day.  All schedules are subject to change. Please check back often for updates.  

 

Q: Where will practice be held?

A: We plan to practice on the turf at Darien High School.  DHS fall field assignments (for all programs) will not take place until June.

 

Q: When will practice be held?

A: During the week, youth programs can begin using the fields after the high school teams have finished practicing (typically between 5-5:30pm). Weekend schedules will be subject to high school availability (as they are now).  Tentative practice schedules will be, by grade:

 

1st-2nd Weekend clinic (will do our best to accommodate the soccer schedule)

3rd-4th Saturday Mornings (Sunday Evening Games)

5th-6th Monday & Wednesday Evenings (Saturday or Sunday Games)

7th-8th Tuesday & Thursday Evenings (Saturday or Sunday Games)

 

Q: Why start a 1st & 2nd Grade Program?

A: We are inspired by the success of the youth soccer and lacrosse programs in teaching the basics and inspiring a love of the game at a young age.  We don’t want kids to have to wait until third grade to learn how much fun field hockey can be!

 

Q:  How many games will there be?   

A: Grades 3-4 will either have clinics or intra-league scrimmages every weekend.  Our goal for our travel teams (grades 5-8) is to play at least one game every week. 

 

Q: How many girls will be on a team?

A: The short answer is that it varies.  As we structure teams we’ll work to find the right balance of not having too many players on the sideline and making sure there are enough players to prevent exhaustion. 

 

Q: Are teams organized by grade or birth year?

A: Teams will be organized by grade.

 

Q: Will teams be composed of 2 grades/2 birth years?  (i.e.: "Blue" team is 7th and 8th graders?)

A: Our goal is to form teams that most closely reflect the age and talent mix in surrounding towns.  Some teams may be organized by single grade level, and some may be mixed across two grade levels.

 

Q: Will there be paid coaches for travel teams?

A: Yes.  It is our goal to provide each team with a dedicated coach. Staff coaches will be former collegiate or similar-level players with a focused interest in the success of Darien field hockey.

 

 

Staff & Organization

Q: Who runs DJFH?

A: The DJFH board is a group of parents ranging from those with girls just beginning their youth field hockey experience to those with children who have already graduated. Our Program Director, Wynne Lennon, is a former Division I field hockey player, DHS Freshman team coach and physical education teacher.  Wynne will manage the hiring/training of staff coaches and develop the curriculum in partnership with DHS Varsity Coach, Mo Minicus and JV coach, Kari Johns. Beyond that, DJFH relies on parent participation.

 

Q: Who are the coaches?

A: Grades 5, 6, 7, and 8 will be coached by Wynne Lennon and her team of dedicated staff coaches. It is our goal to provide each team with a dedicated coach.  Staff coaches will be former collegiate or similar-level players with a focused interest in the success of Darien field hockey. Grades 1-2 will be coached by our staff coaches with the support of our 8th graders and high school athletes.  Grades 3-4 will be coached by parent volunteers under the direction and support of our staff coaches.

 

Q: Will there be opportunities for parent involvement?

A: Yes, please visit our volunteer and coaching tabs.

 

Q: Are DHS Coaches Mo Minicus and Kari Johns a part of DJFH?

A: Mo and Kari will not be coaching for DJFH.  However, they will play a key role in the development of our curriculum, actively support the program, and strongly encourage camaraderie between the High School and youth programs.  They look forward to cheering on our girls, encouraging high school athletes to help with coaching, engaging in joint spirit-building activities and having our girls come to support them at their games!

 

Travel Teams

Q: Are there house and travel teams?  How are teams formed?

A: Yes. The types of teams vary by grade level:

Grades 1-2 will be offered in a group, weekly clinic format (no teams).  

Grades 3-4 will be a house program with teams organized loosely by elementary school (not ability) and scrimmages in-house (perhaps occasionally against another town) each week.

Grades 5-8 will be a travel program.  Evaluations will be conducted in the beginning of the season to help organize teams.  These teams will have a series of games against teams from surrounding communities.

 

Q: When will evaluations take place? 

A: Evaluations for grades 5-8 will likely begin the week of August 31.  Grades 1-4 will be house programs and will not have evaluations. Please visit the Evaluation Policy page for more details.

 

Q: How will evaluations be conducted?

A: Please see the Evaluation Policy under the Policy tab.

 

Q: What is the commitment policy?  Can my child play another sport in the fall?

A: DJFH encourages participation in other sports.  That said, we believe a commitment to the team becomes increasingly important as athletes approach high school age.  There is no specific commitment policy for grades 1 through 4, but regular attendance is strongly encouraged. 

 

In 5th-8th grades, an athlete is expected to make a commitment to their team/teammates by attending practices and games (minus excused absences for medical reasons or unavoidable family conflicts).  Unexcused missed practices and/or games will impact playing time.

  

Q: Can players be moved up or down on the travel teams?

A: During the evaluation process we make every effort to place players on the team that best suits their level of play.  Generally, we try not to move players after teams have been established. In rare circumstances, we may make adjustments.

 

Q: Which teams will the 5th-8th grade travel teams play?

A: DJFH will play against teams from surrounding towns. To simplify scheduling, we have begun the process of joining the Fairfield County Field Hockey Association (FCFHA). However, we have also started the process of reaching out directly to schedulers to coordinate games. Schedules for the FCFHA are not finalized until late August. We will release our schedule as soon as it becomes available.

 

Q: Is there an incremental charge to tryout for or play on a travel team? 

A: No.

 

 

Other Policies

Q: What is the DJFH policy on playing time? Is it equal playing time for all?

A: Our primary goal is to grow the love of the game.  To love a sport means to play it.  Coaches will make every effort to ensure equal playing time for all. 

 

Q: Can I request to coach my own child?

A: Yes, for grades 3-4.  For grades 5-8, our policy is to not have parents coach their own children.

 

Q: Can I request that my daughter is on the same team as a friend?

A: DJFH is about having fun with friends and growing NEW friendships.  No, requests cannot be made to be on the same team as a friend.  However, 3-4th grade teams are loosely organized by school-- please be sure to select the appropriate school during registration.

 

Q: Are siblings placed on the same team?

A: Our general policy is to place siblings on the same team. At the 5-8 level, if there is a significant difference in ability between siblings, we will coordinate with the parents to ensure the best fit for their players.

 

Q: Do you have a Code of Conduct for players?  For parents? For coaches?

A: Yes, it’s listed under our Policy tab.

 

Q: What is the DJFH inclement weather policy?  If it's raining, will they still play?  If it's colder than 40 degrees will they still play?

A: We’ve all signed up to play field hockey.  If we can find a way to play the game, we will do so.  That said, we want it to be fun and safe-- and you should always make the decision you feel is best for your child.  

If lightning is sighted during a practice or game, referees/coaches must escort all players off the field to a sheltered area as quickly as possible. We must wait at least 30 minutes from the last lightning/thunder before returning to the field.  Cancellations will be communicated as early as possible, but may be as late as 30 minutes prior to a game or practice. Please monitor team communications and DJFH.org for updates.

 

Q: What is your cancellation/refund/late fee policy?

A: Registration fees (less applicable PayPal and processing fees) will be fully refundable through June 30th.  Late fees apply after June 15.  Please see the Late Fees & Refund policy under the Registration tab for more details.

 

 

Logistics & Financials

Q: Does my child need to register with USA Field Hockey in order to participate in the program?

A: No, participants do not need to register with USA Field Hockey to participate in Darien Junior Field Hockey.

 

Q: Do you accept players from other towns?

A: Unfortunately, we cannot accept players from other towns at this time.

 

Q: What equipment is needed to play field hockey?

A: Please see the “Required Gear For All Play” under the Registration tab.  We have also provided a couple of useful guides on our FH 101 Tab. For any additional information or guidance please contact Wynne at .

 

Q: Do we get to keep the DJFH uniform?  Can my daughter request a specific number for her team jersey?

A: Grades 1-4 will keep their pinnies.  Grades 5-8 will return them.  No, specific number requests will not be honored.

 

Q: Where do our program fees go?

A: Coaches, field space, insurance, goals, balls, goalie equipment, referees, website, financial aid and other expenses.  DJFH is a not-for-profit organization.  We rely on and encourage parent volunteers and participation.

 

Q: Does DJFH provide financial aid/scholarships for those in need?

A: Yes, we believe everyone should be able to play field hockey.  Please see the Financial Aid page under the Registration tab.

 

Q: Field Hockey seems complicated - please explain the concept and basic rules of the game.

A: We’ve provided two documents on our FH 101 Tab, Field Hockey Basics - USA Field Hockey and Mom’s Guide to Field Hockey.