Extracurricular activities are a part of high school, but are they really important? Yes! Extracurricular activities provide the chance to learn valuable life lessons while earning high school credit. They give teens an opportunity to take a break and do something fun. Plus, extracurricular activities look great on transcripts. What extracurricular activities are available?
Cooking allows kids to earn high school credit and help around the house! Three to five hours every week cooking may sound like a lot, but how much time do you devote to cooking? If your teen plans and cooks three meals every week, they can easily reach this goal. With online tutorials, your child can learn to cook with minimal assistance. To help record their progress, they can write a brief summary of their experiences at the end of each meal.
While often thought of as a feminine art, there is no reason why boys can’t get in on the action, too. Students should spend between three and four hours every week on sewing. To keep track of their progress, they could write a weekly report of what they learned, enjoyed, did not enjoy, etc,. Take a picture of your child with each completed project.
Sports can give children exercise and high school credit! You may think that your student has to be on a team for sports, but that’s not true. It is perfectly acceptable for your family to be your team. Spending three to five hours in the backyard each week can still count as highschool credit. One way to document this is to have your child keep a log of what they played, how long they played, and who won the game/games. You can even do P.E. in the summer!
Music benefits the mind and the body, but it’s also school! Many people either own an instrument, or have neighbors who would be willing to make an arrangement so that the student can learn to play their instrument. Students should spend between three and five hours on music every week. While you may already have a way of documenting what your child is learning, another method is keeping a lesson plan and recording each finished song.
While the idea may sound intimidating, creating art can be easy! Art can be learned right at home! With the plethora of online tutorials, kids can learn how to draw with crayons, pencils, and paint, right from their desk! Art is a good way to relax the mind and exercise creativity. Students should spend between two and four hours on art every week.
Martial Arts is a great way to learn self-defense and discipline. Students should spend between two and five hours on martial arts every week. This time doesn’t all have to be classes; it can be at home practice, too. Having a way to keep track of their progress, written reports from your student, a list of their belts, etc. would be useful as well.
In the twenty-first century, photography is an easy hobby to start. It is possible to become a good photographer without any formal training. Students should spend between two and four hours every week on photography. Your child can write a short report about what they learned each week. The semester project might be a photo album of things in nature or items in an antique store.
The Bible commands everyone to be charitable. There are lots of different ways to volunteer. Spend between two and five hours volunteering every week. Having your child write a report on each week’s experiences would not only be a way of recording their work; it would also give them an opportunity to reflect on what they have done to help their brothers and sisters in Christ.
Ultimately, you’re the teacher; this article simply gives ideas and time frames to help make that job easier. The best idea is to see what your student is interested in. You’ll be surprised at how willingly they will jump into doing extracurricular activities when they are doing something they like!
Natalie Dowd is an IAHE intern. She is a homeschooled senior, and has been homeschooled on and off for a total of eight years. She enjoys reading, sewing, baking, playing piano, and crocheting. She also enjoys traveling and has been to twenty-six states. She isn’t quite sure what God wants her to do after high school, but is contemplating being a dental hygienist or a teacher. Either way, she will probably be taking classes at Ivy Tech Community College after graduation.