Friday, January 05, 2007

Over-scheduling your children.

I read an interesting article today. It was in the newsletter that Abby's school sends home. I'd like to share it with you.

Lighten activity schedule to shift focus on school
"A crowded schedule makes children feel stressed out now and burned out later. Plus it may take away from your child's top priority ~school.
Child development author David Elkind says children under age six don't need to take part in structured activities. Many parents have a well-meaning need to keep their child busy with outside activities. But it's not the way to go.
Children whose days are filled with structured activities get used to being entertained all the time. They're bored more easily and less creative. Never alone, they seldon have had to rely on their own inner resources to keep busy or solve problems.
Also, three out of four children who start sports, scouts, music or other lessons before first grade drop them by age 13. They've done the activities so long, they're no longer fun."
~* Im not to sure about copyright stuff. I think they got the article from The Parent Institute, A division of NIS, Inc.*~
The article goes on to list some ways to cut back you kids schedule and so on.
I found this article so interesting because I have always felt bad about not putting the girls in more activities. I just thought it was a good idea for them to be more social. I'm not really sure why that's important to me because I am not a very social, outgoing person. I think I just have that mentality of wanting my children to do more and have more than I did.
I'm actually comforted by this article. It soothed me a little. I don't feel like such a bad parent for not getting my kids involved in different things. Now I am glad and I think I will wait a few years so they can try a few things out and then tell me what they are interested in.
What do you think of the article?

1 comment:

pedalpower said...

I think it sounds like you are doing great! My kids had no structured activities other than Sunday School until they were in school. I didn't even send them to preschool...I just worked with them to learn the preschool stuff. It's funny too, cause the only thing the kindergarten teacher said they didn't know was things like lining up single file and raising their hands to talk. I never thought of that and they caught on in a day anyway.

During grade school they played basketball, did cubscouts and brownies, and learned to play an instrument. Unfortunately both gave up basketball in high school because it wasn't fun anymore. Just like your article said!