Research

Extracurricular Activities for Elementary Age Kids

The learning doesn’t have to end when your kid comes home from elementary school. Instead, sign them up for an after-school activity that’s both fun, entertaining, and educational.

The learning doesn’t have to end when your kid comes home from elementary school. Instead, sign them up for an after-school activity that’s both fun, entertaining, and educational. 

Some extracurricular activities for elementary-age kids include music lessons, dance classes, art classes, martial arts, or gymnastics. 

Music Lessons

From an outsider’s perspective, music lessons may seem boring or monotonous, but it comes with many benefits, especially for elementary-aged kids. When a child learns how to play an instrument, they involve many skill sets simultaneously. 

For example, your kid will need to listen to the music, read the notes, and play the cords all at once. In doing so, your kid becomes more equipped to multitask and think quicker. It also helps aid language development. 

The Children’s Music Workshop recently researched a study about learning music’s relationship with childhood development and found that learning to play an instrument acts as a catalyst for the brain’s left-side development–the side associated with language. 

Dance Classes

Introducing your kid at a young age to dance classes is a fun and healthy way to get your child active and introduce them to discipline and collaboration while cultivating their creativity.

As an extracurricular, dance classes provide an outlet for your kid’s pent-up energy. Instead of running rampant around the house after school, they focus that energy on the dance class. Plus, dance will keep your kid moving, fit, and healthy. 

With measured movements and a group setting, your child will not only stay physically active but will begin learning the importance of discipline, routine and collaboration too. 

It’s also a good way to keep your child social and engaged. Working with a class and getting ready for performance will help your kid get to know other kids their age and bond over a common interest.

Painting and Arts Classes

Keep your kid’s creative mind active with painting or other arts classes as an extracurricular activity. After spending the day learning the different core subjects, such as math, science, and English, art class can serve as a creative outlet and therapeutic activity. 

Art is typically used as a form of therapy for individuals with mental health struggles. Research has found that art classes can help manage behaviors, alleviate stress, and induce relaxation. For elementary-aged kids, in particular, these benefits can help them learn how to cope with anxiety at a young age. 

According to a study about chronic stress in children, 35% of American kids experience some form of stress, whether from school, recent changes, home life, or others. Art introduces kids to a fun and relaxing way to cope with their stress without them even realizing it.

Martial Arts

Not only are martial arts classes fun, but they’re also beneficial. Martial arts classes, whether standard karate, jiu-jitsu, or other forms, teach kids perseverance, patience, and self-discipline. Karate classes, for example, require completely clean, wrinkle-free robes. 

If a kid or student shows up wearing a dirty, wrinkled mess, they will get spoken to about the importance of the robes and, depending on the institution, will have to miss out on certain aspects of the class. 

At a young, elementary school age, learning how to treat your belongings and the importance of following rules instills a valuable sense of self-discipline.  

Martial arts also isn’t a particularly fast-paced class. Students enter the class as beginners and must undergo a series of classes where they learn step by step new movements. They aren’t thrown into competition right away, nor are they running up and down courts. This slow pace will teach your kids the importance of patience and practice. 

Gymnastics

At the ripe elementary age, kids are learning and thinking quickly. They’re running around at recess, working hard on homework, and forming bonds with classmates. Keep the momentum going after school with a gymnastics class. 

Your elementary-aged child doesn’t have to be the next Simone Biles to sign them up for a gymnastics course either. Instead, think of a gymnastics class as an activity for your kid to blow off steam, and begin to learn some core skills. For example, gymnastics can help kids hone their focus and discipline through exact movements and continual practice. 

Plus, landing tricks and learning new skills will majorly boost your kid’s confidence. Not to mention, it teaches them about delayed gratification, meaning they’ll begin to understand that an individual must work hard at something to see results.  

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