Parent's Resource Center

Sports vs School

All work and no play can make you a very dull person, not to mention wreaking havoc on your health. So get out there in your spare time and get involved in sports, music, scouting, or whatever activities interest you. But, how do you know how much is too much? How much time can you spend on extra activities and still do well in school?

There's no easy answer to that question, but there is some helpful advice. Some experts say that children in primary grades should only be involved in a structured activity outside of school once per week, those in intermediate grades could have activities going on two or three times a week, and those in junior high could be involved four or five times a week. These guidelines are sound, but the answer may be of a more personal nature.

We all take different amounts of time to accomplish similar tasks, and schoolwork is no exception. The same assignment could take one student ten minutes to complete, but another student might work on it for half an hour. Obviously the one who needs more time to get their schoolwork done should limit their extra activities a little more.

But what if you are extremely talented in your other activities? What if, for example, you are a superb hockey player and you are looking forward to a future in the NHL? Well, beyond the fact that thousands of superb hockey players simply don't make it to that level, there are some other things that put the importance of your schoolwork into perspective. Suppose you do make it to the NHL. What will you do after you retire? Professional hockey players retire about thirty years before the rest of the working world. You'll need to have had a good education to start your second career. But you plan to invest your money and have enough to retire on for good at that stage? What if you suffer a career-ending injury in your first season? Now you are starting to see why you need to find a good balance between school and your other activities.

So how will you know if you have too much else on the go? How many of these questions do you answer yes to:

It is important to have other interests that you pursue, but just be sure they don't overtake your life!

For another view on this subject, visit Overscheduled Kids

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