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When Should a Child Quit an Activity?

Carolyn Means - Monday, September 05, 2016

What family doesn’t have discarded tutus, tap shoes, baseball gloves, cleats, swim team bags or violins in a closet? These are the leftovers of exposing children to activities that can enrich their young years. It starts with an investment in time and paraphernalia, and then comes the day they want to quit. The Wall Street Journal (August 25, 2016) carried an article by Nina Sovich with some helpful points for parents who worry that allowing children to quit an activity will have lasting, negative repercussions. Sovich says, “there are benefits to letting go, and they are best learned in childhood” when the stakes are low. Quitting allows a child to learn to make decisions. Sovich suggests children should spend at least six months at an activity or a season at a sport to decide if they like it. Parents need to be careful when choosing a child’s activities because their child may not have the natural talent for it. If children are exposed to many activities, they will usually find one they are passionate about by their teens. Remember my rule for activities: one after school per semester because the brain needs rest to learn all the content our schools are pushing.


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Nothing is more important than your child's education. SCHOOL SOLUTIONS in Houston, Texas, offers educational consulting services to help parents make the right choice for their child’s school. As an Educational Consultant and founder of SCHOOL SOLUTIONS in 2004, I have helped over 1000 students find the right fit at over 90 different Houston private and public schools, from preschools to high schools, including special needs schools.

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