E for Extracurricular
I run an activity center where we conduct many after school activities for kids. Parents give a lot of preference to extracurricular activities these days. And I have seen all kinds of parents in last few years of my running this activity center.
Today life is like a running race where everyone just wants to win. They are least bothered about the route they take to reach the top. Same goes with many parents and they just follow others blindly and make their kids run around.
As a parent, I know we all want them to get an exposure to different activities. We never had so many opportunities and activities when we were small. I myself want my kids to learn dance, music, sports, art etc. but over the years I have learnt that it is OK to let them be.
My elder one loves music and painting. She used to go to classes for both and slowly when the pressure of studies increased, she left painting. But she is continuing with music as she loves it.
On the other hand, my younger one loves dancing and sports. She goes to basketball classes and Kathak. She did go to art classes for some time but didn’t enjoy. I also realised that she doesn’t like anything in which she has to sit at one place. So, I never pushed her for other classes and let her learn whatever she is interested in and enjoys.
So, it’s important to enroll them according to their interest. Talking about interest, I get a lot of calls from parents to enquire about classes whose kids are just 3 or 31/2. And I just tell them to wait for few more years as I feel it’s too early for them to join any extracurricular classes. They get easily distracted and their attention span is short. Let them enjoy for some more time and free play is great for them. They have enough time to learn things.
Points from my experience-
When they are small, we should guide them but there is a thin line between guiding and forcing. Wait till they are ready to develop an interest.
Being ready means being healthy, my next topic is related to food and picky eating. Stay tuned. 🙂
A for Affection
B for Believe
C for Confidence
D for Dance
April 6, 2017 at 12:40 am
This strikes a chord… a friend of mine enrolled her child in ballet and it was a disaster. The kid was never interested but had been forced into it by her mom. Eventually she gave up. Allowing them to have a choice in the matter ..well, it matters. 🙂
April 6, 2017 at 9:17 am
Agree..Thanks Roshan for reading. 🙂
April 6, 2017 at 6:21 am
Huh – I typed this really thoughtful comment that just disappeared. I have mixed feelings on extracurricular. It’s hard to find a good mix without overscheduling them. We currently do dance, swimming, Kumon Math and Brownies. We’re dropping swimming in a few weeks for a session because it’s too much. It is challenging to strike the right balance.
April 6, 2017 at 9:21 am
Agree Louise ..It is important to guide them when they are small. Thanks a lot for sharing your thoughts 🙂
April 6, 2017 at 1:25 pm
I was given free will in this manner and I being hyper active kid at that time, used to join to every other class 😀 My mom had a difficult time controlling my over enthusiasm! But I agree with you, children should be given a choice to decide what they want to do.
April 6, 2017 at 1:46 pm
Haha..your mom is lucky cos I have hard time sending my girls to after school classes. I have learnt to leave them and decide on their own about the activities they are interested in. Thanks swathi 🙂
April 6, 2017 at 1:35 pm
YOu really are one creative mommy. YOur kids are lucky.
April 6, 2017 at 1:49 pm
Thank you 🙂
April 6, 2017 at 2:37 pm
Today life is like a running race where everyone just wants to win. They are least bothered about the route they take to reach the top.
Well said and so true, Deepa.
These are the parents who are living their lives through their children. Mindlessly! Very sad!
April 6, 2017 at 3:26 pm
Thanks Mayuri 🙂
April 6, 2017 at 3:00 pm
As a kid, i liked dance but had to go to music class. However, a mixture of all my music, veena, swimming and tennis classes(not at the same time) shaped who I am today. So I guess I am thankful. My son is too young for extra-curricular activities yet. Should keep these thoughts in mind.
E for An Education for all
April 6, 2017 at 3:27 pm
Thank you Namratha 🙂
April 6, 2017 at 3:58 pm
My mom made me learn the instrument Organ … though I loved to play that, the teacher who taught me was very strict. he used to pinch me like anything. That I hated the whole class. he used to come on a bicycle and the moment his cycle bell sounds I start crying. Because pf him, I stopped learning and deeply regret the same now. I could have just went and enrolled with a better teacher. My mom used to enroll me in extracurricular activities but never forced me to continue if I find it not interesting. It was completely my choice to learn or leave.
April 6, 2017 at 5:17 pm
Oh that would have been a terrible experience. Thanks Sheethal for sharing your experience with us. 🙂
April 6, 2017 at 5:12 pm
Agree. Kids should be given exposure to various extracurricular activities based on their interests. Making the kids run from one activity to the other in a day is not right as well.
April 6, 2017 at 5:18 pm
Thanks Shilpa 🙂
April 6, 2017 at 5:35 pm
Important to know understand their choices and not peer pressure. Well put.
April 6, 2017 at 5:51 pm
Thanks Neha 🙂
April 6, 2017 at 10:26 pm
Extra curricular activities is the need of the hour these days for the parents! The world is competitive and because of that the entire pressure falls on the child! It’s good to let the kids be and give time to them so that they can understand what they really want!
April 6, 2017 at 11:14 pm
Thanks Geetika for reading 🙂
April 7, 2017 at 12:35 am
I am so cute off from physical activities now. Use to love extra curricular activities.
April 7, 2017 at 8:49 am
April 7, 2017 at 9:19 am
Excellent advice DEEPA.My daughter loves drawing dancing crafting and we try to do it with her too.
April 7, 2017 at 9:27 am
Thanks Amrita 🙂