Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Over-Scheduling?

I have had something on my mind since last night....
I took my youngest to her gymnastics. I usually don't stay for the entire time (2hours) I do a few errands and come back and stand in the lobby for a while to watch. Last night I went to the "viewing room". There were other parents there from another class that goes several times a week and compete. As I was watching my daughter, I was listening to some of these parents talking about their childrens' schedules...what it basically came down to was that besides several hours, several times a week, some of these children were in other activities that were several hours a day, several times a week, and in one case the only day off was the middle of the week, and that was homework night!!! When do these kids get to be "just kids"? Hang out, relax, have a friend over???? I ended up leaving, going to do some errands and coming back and watching from the lobby. I just could not imagine......and the other thing...these particular parents seemed to have the same type of schedule themselves!! Like they needed to schedule a time for everything! I'm all for activities...my kids have all been in activities, but due to money and time we limited the activities...geesh!
I just was in amazement.....
EDITED TO ADD: My youngest only does the advanced recreation gymnastics (which she has done for 4 years....once a week and she takes piano lessons as well.) She's 12 and this is quite enough for her...still involved....but has it's limits.
Marion

6 comments:

FayeRaye said...

As a first grade teacher, I see it every day~ Amazing and we encourage involvement/activities but in moderation...Some parents just feel they have to live their lives through their children I guess...I am a parent of older children and am so thankful they played sports and had all their other activities but, am also glad we paused some along the way and OUR quality time~! There, I've put in my two cents worth~ Have a great day, Faye

Deb said...

You know, I see more and more of this overscheduling with the kids. I've got the same problem myself with especially my daughter. She wants to get into everything. I finally had to pull the plug and stop some of it because like you and gymnastics, she would be there for 2-1/2 hours so I would run errands and try to catch up on my life. But then we would get home and she would be exhausted and still have more homework and bath. It got to be too much so now I'm limiting things as much as possible. Activities are great for kids and keep them busy, but in moderation.

Catherine said...

Our boys are allowed to do one sport per season, that coupled with scouts is plenty. This year my oldest added an instrument, but that is all they will do.

We make sure they have plenty of time to just be and play (and not video games or tv watching either!)

mumzy said...

Don't worry, I really think that your children will be much more rounded individuals the way you are bringing them up. I totally agree that kids need some time to be kids. It always amazed me how some parents over schedule their kids' time. You are on the right track girl!

Have a great week!

Mel R said...

I've seen that also and sometimes it just makes me think that they do it to feel self-important. Like the more full the schedule is, the more successful they must be as a parent or a person. I could be wrong but it seems like that to me. I have noticed that "down time" seems rather frowned upon by some and I don't get that. But then, I'm a pretty content person and like to be at home. I don't feel a need to run, run, run when where I like to be best is right here with my family in our own house.

WendyCarole said...

I taught a little girl age 8 who did things everynight of the week and most of the weekend. I did ask her if she ever had spare time to just be herself she said yes but I wasn't convinced. it seemed that her parents had scheduled something for every waking hour.

I think activities are good but children need time to make their own amusement or do nothing.
I have only just found your blog