Adults can overdo working, so can children overdo after school programs? Especially when they are still going to school during the day? Of course they can overdo it! Anyone can become tired and overworked. Sometimes, it can become confusing to decide how much is too much when children in after school programs. Sure these programs are fun or of the child’s interest, but even too much of a good thing can be tiring or make one sick. So when it comes to after school programs for children, how much is too much? Here is a little guide to help you with giving your child the right amount of after school programming, ranging all the way up into their middle school years. This guide will tell you what kind of clubs are good for each grade level and how much in each week they should participate.
At this grade level, children are just beginning to learn how to get used to discipline, a set schedule, and interact with other children. At this age and grade level, one or two after school program classes a week are enough, and you can look for a more challenging activity once they settle down and get used to it. But their after school time should be carefree and simple right now.
At this grade level, it may be a good idea to avoid any competitive sports, as they are still to young to worry about winning and losing at sports. However, they do need a healthy way to get out their energy. After school programs should be kept down to one or two activities per week, and these activities can include physical activities, noncompetitive sports, playgrounds, and play dates with their peers.
Children at this age and grade level are old enough to let you know what kind of activities and after school programs they want to participate in. You can still keep this down to one or two days a week as they are getting used to it, but let them have some time to themselves to unwind and work on their interests. This can include learning how to play a musical instrument, art classes, swimming, sports, and more.
When most children hit this grade level, they begin to socialize a little more. They can take up art classes, team sports, dance, or whatever interests they’d like to explore. You can sign them up for a sport or class for an after school program a few times a week, but just be sure that they have enough time for their family and other fun activities.
By the time children hit this grade level, they will be able to tell you what they are or are not interested in. This is also a time where social pressure may begin to build up. S they should take an after school program, class, or sport that will help to boost their confidence or manage stress. However, they still have their family, school work and homework, and other activities. So be sure to sign them up with something of interest that will allow them to still have time for other important activities.
Most fifth graders are full of energy and want to do a lot. They may want to take different classes such as art, music, or dance, or take up a sport or theater. This may also be a good time to introduce them to community service. However, with all of the interests they have developed, they may become too busy their family, school work, chores, and other important activities. So you should make sure to keep atleast two days free for family, school, home, and other activities.
As your child hits their preteen years, you can encourage them to join clubs such as Boy Scouts or Girl Scouts, chess, theater or drama, music, art, and more. If they are already in clubs from the previous years, you can see if they would like to remain in these clubs or explore other interests. Of course, between balancing their home and school like with the clubs, and making sure your child doesn’t burn out, their clubs should last no more than sixteen to twenty hours a week.
When helping your child to select an after school program, it is always important to learn how much is too much. Then you can be sure to narrow the programs down to something that is of interest of the child, but will not end up burning them out. You don’t want them to become stressed, tired, sick from overdoing the activities.
By learning how much is too much and limiting their activities to a few hours or days a week, you can be sure your child has fun with their activities while still having time for family, home and school life, and rest time.