6 Reasons why after school activities are worth the effort

Sep 1, 2012 at 4:13 a.m. ET

Don't let kids miss out on the many benefits after school activities provide!

Little girl on soccer team

It takes time and effort to juggle after school activities in a busy schedule. Children have homework and family activities to balance with these extracurricular programs, and parents often have to adjust their own schedules to be available for transportation and to attend events. It may be tough to sandwich in time for after school activities, but the benefits kids gain are more than worth the extra effort!

Physical development

Kids who participate in sports and other athletic recreational programs get the exercise every child needs and are building good habits for a healthy lifestyle. They also learn lessons in teamwork and good sportsmanship. Kids who are involved in sports learn to be humble winners and gracious losers. Often, these sports activities will continue into adulthood and provide lifelong enjoyment.


Sports teams aren't the only avenue for kids to learn about teamwork. Clubs and activities like dance and scouting require children to work together for a common goal. This skill will be helpful to them throughout their lives with family and in a future workplace.

Self esteem

Mastering any new skill builds confidence in kids, and who doesn't want a confident kid? Confidence gained through learning something new in the relaxed atmosphere of an after school activity is a great way to foster self-esteem and encourage self-empowerment.

Time management

Kids have especially busy schedules during the school year and will learn how to manage their time when they participate in after school activities. Don't let them overload their days. Discuss the activities they'd like to be involved with and choose based on their enthusiasm and available time.


Kids who participate in after school programs find it easier to build relationships and make friends with other children who have a similar interest. A common interest in a sport, music, an educational club or a community activity is a bond and allows kids to socialize and let relationships evolve in a natural way. Even shy kids overcome social awkwardness while enjoying a favorite activity with a group of peers.

Setting goals

Many after school activities are fun and exciting for kids while also teaching them to set goals. As they learn and achieve, build skills and gain confidence, they are also encouraged to perform at a higher level. Setting goals and working to reach them is an important skill to use throughout their lives.

Tell us

What type of after school activities do your kids participate in? Share in the comments below!

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