Extra curricular activities
Our oldest started Kindergarten this year and with it came many changes including our introduction to organized sports and extra curricular activities. When she was in preschool we mostly kept our weekends clear of extra stuff as our weekdays were so hectic. Once she started school I felt the pressure to sign her up for something.
I know I should not feel pressure but I do and here's why. At this age she does not know what she is good at nor does she have an interest in much except for watching television and terrorizing her brother. Good news- those are not activities that cost us extra money. Bad news- you can not put those on a college application.
Ok for real we are not preparing her college application now. But here is my dilemma with waiting until she shows an interest in something, especially sports. Now days kids start sports so early that if she decides she's interested in starting a new sport when she's 10 its basically like an 8th grader trying to go into the NBA. And she is a kid that wants to be perfect at everything the first time she tries it. Also given her gene pool she is not likely to be blessed with natural athletic ability so she could use a head start.
So she did soccer in the fall, dance all year, and softball this spring.
Let's start with soccer. This was a bit of a disaster. She started out strong until one day she got nailed in the stomach and head with the ball in the same game. And that was an end to her going anywhere near the ball in soccer.
Dance she seems to enjoy. Of course. Its the most expensive and can we talk about the costumes and recitals and flowers. My child is not on Broadway. She can barely clap to a beat. So why does she need 2 costumes for the recital and why do they cost so much money? Also did I mention she is 5?
She is doing softball now and seems to be enjoying it more than soccer. It is an all girls team, and while I still think she prefers playing the infield because it doubles as a sandbox, she is getting better.
And working parents- how do you reliably get your kids to a practice that starts at 5:15? We are still trying to figure that one out.
So begins our world of extra curricular activities. We are fortunate that we are able to give our kids these opportunities and I am grateful for that. I do worry that it is too much too soon, but I struggle with not having her participate and them losing out on opportunities later on. For now the plan is to suggest things but ultimately let her choose what she wants to do and not force anything on her.
Stay tuned for the next blog post on this subject in 2 years when our younger child starts sports entitled: how to be in 2 places at one time.