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How To Manage Your Child's Extra-Curricular Activities
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A sign that a child is doing too much is
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How To Manage Your Child's Extra-Curricular Activities
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The only way your child will figure out what they enjoy is by trying lots of things. So, if you can, allow them to do as many as they want to begin with. Then you can drop activities off one by one as they figure out what they really enjoy.
There is an important balance to strike between school work, family life, rest time and extra-curricular activities. These priorities will vary depending on where you are in the school year. At certain times in the year, revision for exams or coursework deadlines will need to take priority over sports, while at different times extracurricular activities can play a more prominent part in your child's life. The school should be sympathetic in this and help you to prioritize.
Children can be faddish - sometimes they will be enthusiastic about something for a few months and then drop it. This might be irritating, but it is an important part of them developing their own character and tastes. Don't worry about it - by doing all these things they're getting a breadth of experience behind them and will benefit in the long run. You can learn as much about your child from what they don't like as what they do.
It's important to recognise if your child is doing too much. Signs to look out for may include: dropping grades; letters from school indicating that your child has missed homework deadlines; stress and irritability; and, in the case of sports, frequent injury.
"Pushy Parent" syndrome - particularly when manifested on a sports field - is frowned upon in many schools nowadays. Ultimately, there is little point dragging your child to take part in an activity in which they show little interest, because as soon as they are able they will choose to stop going and the supposed benefit of that activity will be lost. If your child isn't expressing enthusiasm for an activity themselves, ask yourself if they are interested or whether you are making them go.
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