kathie

high school extra-curricular activies

19 posts in this topic

Oh. Yes, you are right, as usual, momof 3!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :)

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I have an older son in a large high school. He was warned before his freshman year that he would only be able to do one major extra-curricular activity (band or a sport, etc) and graduate on time. He was involved with many things before high school and didn't need to study a lot to get decent grades--so he was able to juggle 2 activities for his first 2 high school years, then had to concentrate on one, or it would have taken on-line courses and summer school to get his required credits in to graduate. He doesn't have a lot of time for anything besides this one remaining activity and school and all of his friends are in the same activity. We've made him keep up with a church youth group and scouting (neither activity 100% attended due to conflicts).

 

So, really, I don't see DD as being much different from big brother or any of the other high schoolers that I know who are lettering in sports or other major extra-curriculars. (I guess the only big difference would be that she will not letter or have the experience of being on a school team because her "team" is not at the high school). Many kids have a serious commitment in high school to baseball, music, soccer, whatever, and nowadays it seems that kids are groomed for big teams and big things early (especially in large metroplexes where there is an availability of private coaching). Spring sports like baseball and golf end up being year-round extracurriculars so that the kids can be on winning teams or stand out for scholarship opportunities. The kids have had expensive private coaches and club teams from an early age (older son offered a quite expensive club soccer opportunity in 6th grade) and the kids are expected to give 125% of their focus to that activity by the coaches and the teams they play for (club teams or high school teams).

 

I'm encouraging DD to have a group of friends outside of dance, but I don't expect her to have time for too much high school "extras" and it will need to be a group who is tolerant of her absence for much of the other activities that they do. But, big brother had the same lifestyle and he was not a dancer and I think it will be OK.

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I think that everyone's situation will vary also because of (1.) the flexibility of their high school and ( 2.) the schedule of your dancers classes. Momof3darlings describes what seems to me to be an ideal situation regarding her child's extracurricular activities. I am assuming, based on her directors opinions about the importance of a normal high school experience, that studio classes did not interrupt the school day. Some (like DD) were not so lucky with our circumstances. Although we live in a city where excellent training is available, participating in the highest level ballet classes requires students to be dismissed about 1 1/2 hours early from high school each day. When she switched to our city's company affiliated school, she also had a morning class. (We did a lot of driving back and forth & putting buns up and taking buns down that year!!)

 

Take a look at your own situation. You may find that you are able to work things out the way that Momof3 did. I just wanted to share our experience that switching to a non-traditional "delivery" for our daughter's high school education INCREASED her ability to participate in social activities with her high school (and ballet) friends instead of decreasing it as we had expected before we "took the plunge". Of course... your results may vary, haha! :)

 

P.S. - Feel free to PM me with questions!

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I'm grateful that my DD's high school allows so much flexibility within the timetable and the school day for extra-curricular activities - for example Band is a class on the timetable, so she is practicing her clarinet during school four days per week (so less pressure to fit in evening practice etc.) Student council etc also takes place during school hours. DD is not leaving school early for ballet at the moment, but her school has managed this before by allowing students to use their PE line as a study period (seeing that they don't need the physical activity the same way other children do!). The other strategy my DD has to use to ensure she can still have a social life is to use the times she is at ballet but not in class to get homework/assignments done. She has a group of friends there who do the same, so there is some positive peer pressure happening! :angelnot: Anyway, I know I haven't offered much by way of helping if your child's school is not providing those opportunities during timetabled hours, but wanted to share DD's great example of using time between ballet classes to get ahead of things so there is less to do when she gets home.

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