14 Fun and Interesting Extracurricular Activities for Your Kids to Try

January 25, 2020

These days, extracurricular activities aren’t just for high school kids. Though we might not always think to call them by that name, kids all the way down to preschool age are participating in extracurricular activities more than ever before.

Going along with that, there is a much wider array of options beyond just sports and cheerleading. They range from practical to artsy to active and many can be highly interest-specific. With that in mind, here is a random sampling of ideas for you to consider and discuss with your child.

Music Lessons

Whether it’s vocals or any one of myriad instruments, learning music does more than just keep your young one occupied. It teaches math skills, cooperation, rhythm, and much more.

Swimming

Not only is swimming great for fitness, it also teaches confidence and self reliance. You’d hope that swimming skills for your child are purely for fun and exercise and that they’d never need to be used in a real life-and-death situation, but it’s comforting to know they could be if necessary.

Chess Club

Even very young children can learn to play chess. Not only is it fun, but chess improves concentration while teaching planning, strategy, patience, and boosting math skills.

Sculpting

Do you only think of sculpting as something that DaVinci and Michaelangelo did in 15th century Italy? While older kids may be able to carve stone, much more common is working with soft clay. This is something that even preschoolers and special needs children can do. Your kids will love the artistic expression.

Related disciplines include many other sorts of tactile crafting such as scrapbooking, jewelry making, and even cake decorating.

Painting and Drawing

Less tactile but still very much on the artistic scale are the various forms of painting and drawing. Although you can certainly just turn your kids loose with markers or finger paints, enrolling them in classes will give them guided instruction as well as access to a much wider array of materials.

Dance

Kids are naturally energetic and love to move their bodies. Although parents mostly just enroll girls in dance classes, there’s no reason boys can’t be part of dance class as well. (In fact, it will give them the confidence and skills to interact with girls as well as teaching them to treat girls in ways that are respectful.)

For both boys and girls, dance teaches balance and grace. There are many styles of dance ranging from ballet to hip-hop to tap dancing.

Language Study

The younger you can get kids started learning a second (or third) language, the more natural it will be for them. This is a skill that has obvious practical advantages all throughout life. Beyond the practical applications of knowing more than one language, kids will also learn to embrace and appreciate different cultures.

A side benefit that is seldom considered is that knowing more than one language improves a person’s skill and understanding of their native language. This is because, with no reference point to compare against, studying rules of grammar is an exercise in pure memorization. Having another language as a basis for comparison makes learning both languages much easier.

Rock Climbing

Here’s a fairly specialized activity that has immense fitness benefits. It also teaches kids about safety, knot tying, strategy, and planning. All while also instilling values of trust and trustworthiness.

Circus Classes

Another off-the-wall activity that will teach kids safety, strategy, and planning while building their strength and flexibility. A wonderful side benefit is that circus classes will push kids to face situations that most likely frighten them at first. So they gain confidence as they face their fears and learn the skill of risk assessment.

Cooking Classes

Learning how to cook is a skill that will serve kids well all throughout their lives. Beyond the obvious practical aspect of being able to feed oneself, these classes teach about nutrition and will help cultivate an appreciation for a wide range of healthy food options.

Robotics

What child wouldn’t love to build his or her own robot? Getting your kids interested in joining a robotics club shouldn’t take much convincing. Clubs like this also teach a wide range of scientific, technical, math, planning, and other skills.

Martial Arts

Martial arts are great for instilling a sense of focus and self-discipline. They help kids burn off excess energy while also staying fit. A nice side benefit is that kids may learn to better defend themselves if they are ever in danger.

Skating Activities

Whether it’s hockey, figure skating, or roller dancing, these activities teach balance and coordination. They are also fast-paced and fun for kids.

Gymnastics

Gymnastics can be both a group or an individual activity. While staying fit, kids learn balance and cooperation. They will build muscle and flexibility while increasing focus and concentration.

Wrapping it all up

There are many more activities not covered by this list of ideas. Once you begin to think beyond the standard football, soccer, and cheerleading you’ll see myriad possibilities for keeping your child healthy and engaged. They’ll be having too much fun to even realize all the new skills they are learning.

At Everley Rose Center, we teach children to grow into well-rounded adults. Schedule a time with us to bring your child by so you can both see for yourselves.

 

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