How do we decide which extracurricular activities to choose for our children? Perhaps we want them to improve in a certain subject, learn a language, improve their health through sports, or maybe we just want to keep them busy through the evening until someone is at home to take care of them...

It is important, however, to be careful not to overload our kids with activities. It is important that they learn, but they should not be stressed out running from karate class to math tutoring; the result could be counterproductive resulting in them getting fed-up and losing interest.  

What can we do to make sure our children take full advantage of their after school activities without getting too tired out? In the first place we should help them distinguish between those activities which are a necessity and those that are more secondary.

Secondly, we should keep in mind that not all activities are suitable for children of certain ages (languages should start being learnt sooner rather later, but that is not the same with other activities.)

Thirdly be careful with the timetables; two days of sport should not be put consecutively. Also, make sure that they have one free afternoon... Remember to manage your time so that there is a balance between activity and rest!

Fourthly, keep our children’s’ summer agendas free so that they can participate in activities and camps.

Last but not least, ask our children what activities they would like to do. Okay, Spanish is essential (particularly in this day and age), but, are we sure that a girl would not prefer fencing to learning ballet?

As we always say in this section, these are just tips. Often the best solution comes when just sitting and looking over their activities schedule to figure out how to best maximize their time.

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