Well, school has started and routine is back for the kiddos! So what’s next?
Extra curricular activities and new friends! What do you do when little Suzie comes home from school and wants to go to gymnastics, play volleyball, take dance lessons, piano lessons, and try out for the spell bowl team? “But Mom! All the other kids are doing those things!” So how do you respond? Or when little Joey comes home and says that Johnny wants him to come and play at his house. You know who Johnny is but don’t know his parents. What do you do? Ask yourself these questions and think about the options:
- Are extracurricular activities a good thing? Absolutely - but within reason. Ask yourself some questions even before the sign up sheets start coming home.
- Is this a worthwhile activity for my child at this age?
- How much time is involved away from home?
- Does the time frame fit our family routines (supper, bedtime, etc.)?
- What is the expense involved?
- What adults are leading the activity? Is parental help allowed?
- How will this activity benefit my child long-term? Does it have any eternal impact?
Is it good for your kids to have friends from school that are new to you and your family? Absolutely – but proceed with care.
Instead of allowing your child to visit someone else’s home try this –
- Ask the child and his parents to meet you and your child after school at the playground or to meet for ice cream.
- Invite the child and his family to meet you at church on Sunday.
- Invite the child and his parent over for a play date at your home.
Pray first and foremost! Pray daily for wisdom as you go along this path with your kids. Run to the one who has control over all of this – our Lord and Savior. He’s got this. Pray for direction and His guidance. Then use the faculties he has given you.
Enjoy these new adventures as your child grows up! Pray for wisdom and be encouraged by the never-changing Word of God!
Patty Emmert- I am a former Kindergarten teacher, current preschool teacher and children’s ministry director. I am the mother of 4 grown sons and grandmother to 10! I realize the importance of getting kids started off on a positive track in school. I'd like to offer some fun, simple ways to help you do that for your child!