How to juggle between studies and co-curricular activities in Singapore?
With mandatory co-curricular activities part of every student’s life in Singapore, it may be a little overwhelming at times for students to juggle their studies with these required activities. While these activities can help students with their future job prospects, socialization, and help them to learn time management skills that will last a lifetime, it is often up to the parent to help them figure out this last important aspect without tearing out their own hair. Not only do we have our own work and activities, family responsibilities, chores, and errands, we have to also teach our children how to accomplish a wide variety of responsibilities in any given day. Don’t worry though, after a little direction from parents, children are capable of keeping track of their own schedule…eventually.
Co-curricular activities vary from school to school. Help your child pick an activity that they enjoy participating in as this will likely make the entire process easier on everyone involved without everyone losing their mind. It might be a good practice to schedule your child for an activity that is directly after school instead of Saturdays. This will give kids time to do something else in between their regular classes and when they have to sit down to do their homework and study.
Taking a break in between classes and homework will help your child have time to mentally process what they have learned throughout the day. They will then later be able to make better use of that information to apply it to their homework and studying. It is usually not the best idea to go from classes to study as children are mentally tired from sitting around learning all day. An activity which incorporates physical exercise can help to provide a change of pace in addition to teaching children to include physical activity in their daily lives.
If your child is not into sports, perhaps a band, chess club, arts club, or debate team is more up their ally. The number of co-curricular activities available is usually extensive enough that your child will be able to choose one which allows them to have fun, learn social skills and responsibilities, and learn other skill sets which they will be able to put to good use as they grow.
Allowing the child to choose from the available list will help make your job as a parent that much easier. Often we would prefer if our child participated in an activity that we want them to learn a particular skill from but this can be counterproductive for both parent and child. Children who don’t like their activity are probably going to make attending it a serious hassle. Who needs the extra irritation? If it takes you longer to convince your child to actually go to the co-curricular activity than the time it takes to participate, then you may want to let them choose something else and save yourself from getting any new gray hair.
If your child’s activity takes place later in the evening, allow a short rest period after school in which the child is not doing school-related work, and then have them focus on their homework before or after their co-curricular activity, depending on the time of day. Teach children to be flexible while maintaining their daily schedule.
The key to managing both study and co-curricular activities is to teach your child time management skills. As adults we are forced to balance our work lives, errands, chores, family time, and activities each and every day. Co-curricular activities are the perfect way to help your child learn how to create a balanced life that includes fun things, responsibility, good health, and a social life.