Extra Curricular Activities

Amie - posted on 02/11/2010 ( 5 moms have responded )

6,596

20

412

How much is too much?
What about cost?
For those of you whose children are old enough how many are involved in one (or more)?
Do you think it's beneficial?

My children are involved in a few each. Well our older two.

Our oldest is a Navy Cadet, takes cooking classes, part of Range (gun safety and shooting), part of Marching Band and Tae Kwon Do.

Our son is a beaver Scout and in Tae Kwon Do.

They both love all the things they do with these activities. I have no issue with them because they're relatively cheap in comparison to some others we looked at. Plus I like what the lessons the kids take away from these activities. Self-respect, respect for others (especially authority figures), sharing, caring for your fellow man, personal responsibility (mom and dad can't say it was OUR fault the kids are expected to take care of their things), etc. I find the core values of these groups and activities to be ones that I've been raising my children with.

It sure keeps me busy though. Since my husband works shift work and I am a stay at home mom; I am the one who does the running around. On days where our smallest two don't feel like co-operating it makes it difficult but we get it done. There have been days where I really need to kick myself to get going but the kids enjoy them so much I don't mind. (I just drink more coffee LOL)

Cost wise there are some families that can not afford so much. That's fine but there are also other avenues to look at if they are available. In our city each community association (one for each area in the city) they host low to no cost activities for children. Then it's just a matter of figuring out how to get the kids from here to there. There are also sponsorships in small town areas. When I was a kids my parents never had to pay for me to be a part of baseball since our team was sponsored by a local store.

I do think activities are beneficial and something all kids should have access too. Provided they are still having fun while doing it though. Otherwise it's just not worth it. The hassle for the parents nor the time lost for the child(ren).

5 Comments

View replies by

[deleted account]

My 21 month old and I have been involved in a group music class for toddlers and pre-schoolers since she was 14 months. (Music Together) We LOVE it! She looks forward to going and "plays music class" all the time at home. I don't think it will turn her into a musical genius, but the exposure can't hurt. And its just fun.

We put aside a certain amount of money each month so at the start of each semester we can pay the fee without being stretched. I buy her clothes on consignment as a way to help save for the class. I feel that the time we have together and learning in class is worth more than brand new clothes for her.

Now if she ever starts to not like it, we will drop it. I won't force her to do any activity she doesn't enjoy (especially when I have to pay for it).
My mom allowed my sister and I to chose what we wanted to do. I chose dance and softball, sister chose piano and band. We were also both part of our church youth group and were involved in academic/service clubs at school. We did live 20 minutes outside of town, but mom made it work somehow. To pay for it, she did much the same as I am doing now to pay for my daughter's music class. She told us we had to chose between new things, going to the movies, eating out, etc. and our activities. I am grateful. I will do the same with my kids.

I think extra curriculars are important and allows a kid to tap into their talents and develop a sense of self. But at the same time, limits are important. Kids softball/baseball is HUGE around here and so many kids are members of more than one team. So they have to juggle practices and games for two leagues and many of the leagues travel out of town on the weekends. That to me is just too much. But we'll cross that bridge when we get there, if my daughter wants to play softball.

Lindsay - posted on 02/11/2010

3,532

26

267

My kids will be playing soccer in the spring. And for now we will leave it at that. Once they get in school full-time, I'm sure boy/girl scouts will come and they will be able to choose another activity to go with it. Madeline has recently asked to do t-ball, soccer, gymnastics, dance, and ballet so I told her to think about which she'd prefer the most. She chose soccer. So we will sign up and complete the season. Going from there we will decide if she wants to continue or try something different. Cooper will be along the same lines.

Jodi - posted on 02/11/2010

3,562

36

3907

Both my kids are involved in activities. They are only allowed two at a time, because with my commitments with our two businesses, I honestly couldn't fit more than that in, and now that my son is in high school, it would be difficult to fit in too much after school, as well as his homework AND going to bed at a reasonable time (he's a boy who needs his sleep, LOL).



So, they both have swimming lessons, and Jayden has enrolled this year in basketball (he has one sport he chooses for the year - previous years it has been football, soccer, tennis, etc, it's entirely up to him). It is more than enough, because often that one sport (especially in his age group) will include one or two nights of training and then a weekend competition.



Taylah, up until now, has not had another activity, and wants to do ballet, but I am waiting for her to settle in to her first year at school before I commit her to anything further extra curricular, because she has been very tired.

Amie - posted on 02/11/2010

6,596

20

412

Ah yes, I forgot about the kids out in the boonies. That's a good reason though Krista. If we lived a 20 minute drive out of the city now there's a small chance I'd be driving them in every day for their activities.

Krista - posted on 02/11/2010

12,562

16

847

Where we live out in the sticks, there is a lot of long-distance driving involved when kids are in activities. My husband and I have decided that we're going to try to limit the kids to two activities at a time. So if they want to be in a sport and in an activity, fine. And when one sport or activity is done for the year, they can take up another one. An exception is made if these are after-school activities that don't require money or running around, like yearbook, school newspaper, or intramural sports. They can do as many of those as they like, as long as their grades aren't suffering.

Join Circle of Moms

Sign up for Circle of Moms and be a part of this community! Membership is just one click away.

Join Circle of Moms