It is hard to know exactly what your child needs to become a well-rounded adult. Opinions differ when it comes to how we should raise our children, what kind of exposure is good for them and even the level of parental involvement needed when it comes to raising a child. One thing is for sure, it is becoming more and more difficult to shelter your children from negative influences and make decisions on their behalf that both you and they can be happy with.
It is with these premises that many parents approach the subject of providing their children with activities that will both occupy their time and be enjoyable for their children. While motivations for scheduling our children’s activities will differ, no matter who you are or what activities your child is involved in it is wise to be perceptive to whether or not your child is struggling with being too busy and having to deal with too much.
Signs that your child is involved in too many activities
Children who are involved in too many activities exhibit the same types of symptoms that adults who are likewise stressed-out might exhibit. Children who are too busy often suffer from stress induced symptoms of head aches and stomach aches. Where an overly busy child may not have time to eat properly, symptoms of fatigue and poor nutrition are also common. Children who have too many activities to manage are also more fatigued because of the pace that their developing bodies are being made to withstand. One of the most common and yet less obvious signs that your child is involved in too many activities is that they fail to turn in assignments on time at school and their grades begin to fall. This sign of doing poorly in school is less recognizable as a sign of over scheduling simply because it is more natural to blame the child of laziness or failure to make time to study rather than simply not having the time to devote to studies in the first place.
Avoiding an overly busy schedule for your child
There are certainly some things that you can do to try and prevent the problem of planning too many activities for your child. The first is to make sure that time is set aside for priorities such as time with family and time for school work. So long as other activities do not interfere with these times they may be allowed. Careful planning will be needed in the beginning to help your child to figure out just how much time will need to be devoted to an activity. Children may need the assistance of the parent to realize just how big of a commitment belonging to certain groups will require.
Feedback and communication
Over scheduling and creating a line up of activities that are too much for your child is likely not going to be a one-time event. As with any goal, sometimes we forget that we need time to schedule for down-time and fall back into old habits. This is just one of the reasons why it is important to ask your child for their feedback if you notice that they are acting differently. Encourage open communication with your child not only so that you can help them resolve their scheduling problems, but also so that your children can build a relationship of trust with you as their parent and hopefully be willing to come to you with other problems. Obviously, if your child is involved in too many activities, talks like these will be more difficult for them to initiate. You may want to remind them that if they ever had a concern or something that they needed to talk about, that you would make time for them.