Top 12 Amazing Benefits of Extracurricular Activities for Your Kids

As a parent, most decisions you will take will either be questioned or initiate a debate. From breastmilk to formula milk, from co-sleeping to thumb sucking, you will find many comments and advice you did not ask for. As a new parent, you must learn to filter the advice you get and let this stay with you forever.

If you are a new parent, struggling with the unsolicited advice you get, read the post, Why Advice for New Parents Need to Be Filtered.

When the child grows up, the child starts preschool, and then comes the question of enrolling them in extracurricular activities. The parent in you will question if there are benefits of extracurricular activities. If you want a one-word answer, it is a YES.

People often support their views against extra-curricular activities as they believe that these activities are nothing but a wastage of valuable time for every child. However, various study reports have proved how significant these activities are.

These reports mostly focused on the benefits of extracurricular activities that, in no case, are a wastage of time. Instead, these activities inculcate some great skills and a sense of responsibility among the students. Before discussing the most significant benefits of these activities, let’s find out what these extra-curricular activities are.

What Are Extracurricular Activities?

In the opinion of the educationists and academicians, extra-curricular activities are the special activities that students need to participate in for developing their personality outside of their regular classroom tasks and teachings.

Essentially, these are not part of the academic curriculum but quite obviously, they are an inseparable part of the overall educational scenario. These activities include music, recitation, sports, drama, creative performances, and other tasks that are effective in helping kids for developing inventiveness and imaginative or cognitive talents.

importance of extracurricular activities in child development

My View on Extracurricular Activities as a Parent

As a parent, I know that every decision you take is questionable. More than what the others think, you always keep the happiness and growth of your child as a priority. I remember, when Miss A turned two, I had immense pressure to send her to school. However, I did not send her till she was 2 years and 8 months old. I never regretted this decision.

If you wonder when should you start school, you can read the post, What is the Right Age to Start Preschool?

My view was to let her travel and explore the world rather than be bound by a routine. It was more important for her to connect with me and the family and explore things at her pace. Similarly, I never did too many extracurricular activities.

Never have I packed her days when she is going from one class to the other. We started with one sport and one right brain education class and now she is 5.5 years old, we are still doing the same. She has a sports class daily all days of the week except weekends to ensure there is some physical activity and one day of right brain education.

We have now introduced two sports to her to see her aptitude and inclination. Not all children can do everything. This is our way of ensuring we give her the exposure to find what she enjoys and what she will continue.

Have you heard of Right Brain Education? If not, read the post on the Importance of Right Brain Activities.

The Ideal Approach

Thus, to sum up, there are many benefits of extracurricular activities but a balance is a must as well. Doing too many things can sometimes confuse the kids and you also would not know what is good for them and what are they enjoying.

Give them options but also give them some free time for unstructured and unplanned activities like playing in the park. These are essential and help them with life skills like communication with others, problem-solving among many others. To know more benefits, you should read the post, Why Do I Take My Baby to the Park Daily.

benefits of extracurricular activities

The Benefits of Extracurricular Activities

A child has a much higher capacity to learn than we do as adults. Their brains can absorb more than we can imagine. As parents, we often hear that a child is like a sponge and this is why it is said so.

We cannot leave everything in the school when it comes to teaching our kids. There is much more to learn beyond academics. Each child is different and has a talent and flair for something. The problem comes in identifying this hidden talent.

Also, in our fast-paced lives, we cannot give enough time to kids, and also it is not feasible for us to teach them everything. This is primarily why extracurricular activities are essential.

Let us now discuss the benefits of extracurricular activities in detail:

Break from Strenuous Academic Routine

Most educationists believe that back-to-back academic classes in school can be very strenuous for the kids, no matter what age group they are in. Involvement in extracurricular activities can give them a productive break and that can be very valuable indeed.

As these classes reduce boredom and break the monotony, they are rejuvenating for kids which helps them in other spheres too. Everyone deserves a break and why should kids not get it.

Time Management

One of the most important benefits of extracurricular activities is the life skills they can teach the kids. One important life skill that must be learned today by all is time management. Valuing time is important and this must always be taught to kids.

Most extra-curricular activities need to finish within a certain time frame, therefore the kids get an opportunity to learn the significance of time management. They also learn how to prioritize their work at hand. Both these things can play a major role in their life in the time to come.

To know more ways of teaching time management skills, read the post, Teaching Your Kids Time Management.

Build Self-Esteem

It is an area where normal schooling schedules can hardly contribute anything worthwhile. It is quite natural that all children may not have the same inclination towards studies and you cannot deny it. Here, participation in these extra-curricular activities can motivate them to find an area that they may succeed in.

Naturally, the same activity may attract him more than academics. Working extensively in this domain and excelling or doing well can bring him the esteem that he deserves. You may not hesitate to accept the importance of extracurricular activities in child development if you keep this benefit in the mind. 

For example, when Little Miss A does well in any of her classes, her confidence to do things she might not be good at in school also increases. She feels she is good at something so she can do better in other spheres too. Presently, she feels she is a football champion. 😊

Extracurricular Activities provide break from academics

Better Performance in Academics

It is probably one of the most important benefits of extracurricular activities that students may get.  Students get some kind of freshness while participating in these activities. The experts believe that this freshness helps them to concentrate more on their academic schedules.

As a result, they are successful in achieving a better performance in their academics. Better time management and the ability to concentrate more leads to improvement in grades. Some activities work on stamina whereas some on concentration. All of these have a great role to play in academic performance.

Certainly, it is one important aspect as far as the importance of extracurricular activities in child development is concerned.

Hidden Talent in Kids

Find A Hidden Talent

Of course, one cannot overlook or deny this aspect of participation in co-curricular activities. Normal academic classes cannot find any hidden talent among the students, but extracurricular activities can. The child gets exposure to new activities and options through these activities.

Talents like singing, dancing, and community services can flourish well through these activities. This aspect of these activities adds more to the importance of extracurricular activities in child development. If you search around, then you may find hundreds of people who discovered their special talents only while participating in these activities. 

I remember, in summers my mom would send me for English writing classes where I learned grammar and writing skills. In no way, I am not saying, I am a great writer, but that is something that gave me the confidence to write this blog. I write this intending to help parents, but when the blog ranks in the list of Top Parenting Blogs by Feedspot, it gives joy and a sense of achievement.

The extracurricular class today has given me confidence and freedom. To know more about what this blog means to me, read the post, 6 Reasons on How Blogging Gave Me Freedom.

Awareness Towards the Community

We all have heard and believe that humans are social animals and all have some responsibilities to shoulder. However, many of us are less focused on carrying them out. Extracurricular activities do not always need to be drama, music, or sports. They can be socially productive work where the kids are serving the community and society.

Students, while participating in the socially-useful productive work and activities, realize how important it is to serve the community. They get a chance to do something for the distressed through some of these extra-curricular activities. Without any doubt, it is one of the most significant benefits of extracurricular activities that a child can get rather spontaneously.

Nurture A Subject that The Child Enjoys

The school curriculum is something the kids are bound to do and very seldom they can make a choice. This sometimes forces them to do things they are not inclined to.

When it comes to extracurricular activities students are free to select the subjects from the multiple alternatives. They are free to choose the subject that they often want to do but they seldom get a chance to do anything in that direction.

By choosing that subject, the students get a chance to nurture that subject. Naturally, they have a potential chance to do better as they are free to participate in that without any worries at all. So, the chances for him to enjoy the subject are often very high!  

Building relationships and friendships

Building Relationships and Friendships

You may find endless examples where students find some good friends while they participate in these activities. More than often, the other kids in these classes have the same interests and passion and thus, there is a better connection.

Working with these kids makes them aware of the real sentiments of friendship. On many occasions, these friends last longer even after they come out of school or even after they start working professionally. So, these activities are good platforms for building good and friendly relationships.

Essential Life Skills

Since the list of extra-curricular activities includes some extremely interesting subjects, therefore the students can pick up the ones that can become potential professional opportunities for them later on. While participating in those activities, they realize their strength in them and then they continue with them. Consistent work in those areas can help them to get life skills that can help them to establish themselves professionally in the latter part of their life.

Problem-Solving Capabilities

The modern lifestyle is full of challenges and only fighters can show up and win. While participating in the extracurricular activities, the children develop the leadership qualities in them that they were ignorant of before.

It is certainly good as it motivates them to develop or inculcate problem-solving aptitude in them. Remember, a problem solver can never face any setback in his or her life. The person can only be a winner in the end! 

Parents must read the post, Importance of Problem Solving Skills and How to Nurture Them in Your Child

Impressive Professional Resume

Professional skills are extremely necessary for obtaining good employment opportunities. However, you may find many top employers that pay serious attention to extra-curricular activities. People who mention these activities in their resumes are sure to get some priorities over others.

Quite understandably, these activities can bring people some advantages over others, especially in a domain where the competition level is extremely high!

Helps in Admission in Top Universities

You may believe it or not but participation in these extra-curricular activities can indeed bring amazing benefits. You can easily understand the importance of extracurricular activities in child development by the fact that many universities prefer admitting students with a sound record of participation in these activities. Getting admission to top universities is nearly impossible if a student has weak or no participation in extracurricular activities.

Extracurricular Activities Improve performance in academics

Conditions for Benefits of Extracurricular Activities

After reading no one can ignore the significance of extracurricular activities at all, as they mean a lot in the overall development of the students. However, three important things need to be kept in mind by parents:

  • Extracurricular activities are essential but like anything else in moderation.
  • Another important point here is that the activities must be something the child enjoys and not something that seems like a burden to them
  • Lastly, no two kids are same. Never compare your child and let them bloom and grow at their pace. Read the post on Positive Parenting to know why comparing kids is not a good idea.

As long as the above are kept in mind and there is no pressure from parents, the benefits of extracurricular activities are many and they all contribute to the healthy development of your child.

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