Helping your Child Choose the Right Activities for After School

It is important that you and your child choose the right activities for after school. This is as important as what takes place during the school day. Obviously as the parent, you'll be the one making the decisions. However if you can include your child in the process, you'll have better buy-in.

If your child has sports practice, dance lessons or choir practice, there will be other adults present. That's a good thing. Dropping your child off at the mall isn't such a good idea. If children have nothing to do, the potential for trouble is much higher. Planned after school activities will help her channelize her energy productively. If they want to go to a friend's house after school, make sure an adult will be present. On the other hand make sure that your kids are not too busy.

Does your daughter's activities for after school schedule look anything like this?

Monday: Band practice, school, dance class Tuesday: School, tae kwon do Wednesday: Band practice, school, cheerleading practice Thursday: School, tae kwon do Friday: Band practice, school, football game Saturday: Gymnastics, karate tournaments Sunday: Church, go to friends

Whoa! I hope not. What is missing in that schedule? Where does homework, family time, relaxing, reading, meals, being a kid and sleep fit into that schedule?

Let her be a child. Growing up goes way too fast, don't hurry it along. Once they hit high school there will be much more pressure to excel because college will be right around the corner.

Children should have two main responsibilities: Being a child and being a student. How can they become proficient in either if they are over scheduled, over worked and constantly on the go?

Sure after school activities can have a very positive influence on your child's development. But so can good grades and quality family time. What would happen if you limited your child's activities for after school to just one activity? Let her chose the one after school activity to participate in.

Children grow up way too fast. Make sure they are using their time wisely. Consciously choose an after school activity that will help them to grow and develop their potential. Remember, they are our future generation!
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