Advanced search

What to do when you have over-committed to extra-curricular activities?

(11 Posts)
bodiddly Tue 20-Nov-12 11:17:57

Sorry this is going to be a long one! My ds is in year 3 at school and up until September has done beavers and french once a week - both activities he asked to do. He has always done homework with me most days as well though not always on those days he has had activities. I have deliberately not added any other activities as I have always felt he got tired pretty easily if there was too much going on.

To give you a bit of background ds is a very active child, very full on though he does get tired and doesnt behave well when he is overtired. He is currently being assessed for ADHD - largely for fidgetiness etc. This summer he went to a school sports camp for a few weeks and loved the fact that he was able to play sport every day. The man taking the camp has recently become the p.e. teacher at ds' school and said that he was quite good at football (which he adores) and felt that he should try out for the local area team. We discussed it and said that maybe now he was old enough to try as he hadnt enjoyed the training a few years back when he first went.

We took the teacher's advice and let ds try out for the local team and he has been having a great time attending evening training once a week and games every week or two on Saturdays. However, the p.e. teacher has now started booking inter-school football matches for the year 3 children. This is fantastic as previously the local schools in the area only played matches for years 5 and 6 but he has encouraged them all to put together teams and let the younger children play. He has also initiated training one lunch time a week. As I say this is great and ds loves it. He has been picked for all 3 matches so far and also for the 2 matches that have been arranged this week. The problem arises that ds now has a match one day, lunch time training the next, after school match that same day, training for the club that evening and a match on the Saturday. It all seems too much!

Ds had a mini meltdown in class the other day and told the teacher he was doing too much and the teacher took from it all that he was doing too much homework rather than the football. Now admittedly the football is great for ds, he is less fidgety etc BUT he obviously isnt coping with it all. So I am after some advice ... do I cut out the school football, the club football or a bit of both? Is there a greater benefit in playing for your school than in a local team (especially when you arent the best in the world!). He seems to prefer playing for the school, but is one of the weaker players as many of them have played for the local club for 3 years now, so I think he is worried that if he doesnt play when asked that he will lose his place on the team. Similarly, the local club have quite a few teams and again he would be concerned about losing his place if he repeatedly doesnt turn up for either matches or training. The fact that we have paid for the season for the club is annoying but not the most important fact.

This week is obviously not a normal week but I am not sure what to do for the best. Do dcs adapt and get used to the extra activities or do I need to be ruthless and just cut something out altogether? Any advice would be welcomed.

I am afraid I do not agree with the school in saying he should drop the homework. He was fine last year doing homework, french and beavers .. its only football that is new to the equation!

CMOTDibbler Tue 20-Nov-12 11:32:39

I'd say to just keep an eye on it for now. My son is y2 and does 4 days of sport in the week at school (rugby club, swimming, rugby lesson, gym club), then rides for at least 5 hours a week, plus other school clubs and he needs that activity.

picturesinthefirelight Tue 20-Nov-12 11:38:52

I agree with the school - drop the homework. But perhaps limit the number of matches your ds does. Dd dances and whilst when she commits to something she really dies commit to it last year for example she got into panto so had to drop her stage school Xmas show due to clashes.

This year she did a musical in September so no panto auditions.

RaspberryLemonPavlova Tue 20-Nov-12 11:42:57

Mine would all be considered overcommitted by many people but we manage to make it work.

If this was an unusual week, I wouldn't be jumping to cut things out just yet. Plus I think you need time to settle and find the best way to work things out.

Homework is tricky, but it seems a shame in Y3 to let it rule - I think this is the time they need to be able to try things. Time management is a great skill to acquire as well. My DCs are now Y5, Y8 and Y10 but have always been busy.

We plan the week out to see where the gaps are. They do need to learn (and this isn't easy) that if their free time has been taken up playing football and then Jack next door comes knocking while you are doing homework, then sorry but the homework takes precedence.

My DCs schools are very good at not giving next day homework which is ideal as you can plan effectively. If your school gives lots of next day homework, then you need to negotiate with them about this if it is a match night.

bodiddly Tue 20-Nov-12 11:53:26

Wow I am amazed you all managed to read to the end! Thank you for persevering. It sounds like your dcs cope well with a lot of activity but I know that ds struggles compared to quite a few of his peers that do the same or more than him. Although he can do it at the time he then finds it hard to cope the next day or a few days later. He has fairly early nights most days and obviously needs his sleep but I find myself constantly thinking I am being unfair as he is old enough to stay up later. Perhaps all his fidgeting and constant movement tires him out more than I give him credit for. I don't want him to miss out on opportunities so need to find a happy medium I guess.

legalalien Tue 20-Nov-12 12:06:05

He's in year 3. Why not just ask him what he wants to do (not giving dropping homework as an option as obv he would choose that and assuming the amount is within the bounds of normality he needs to do it). He might want to drop beavers, for example. Or French.

bodiddly Tue 20-Nov-12 12:09:27

I understand where you are coming from legalalien and I am sure his gut instinct would say drop one of those as he is football mad but I think he would change his mind once it was too late. He loves Beavers and all his friends go - it is also nowhere near as physical as the football and I think it is good for him. I think we would still be left with the same problem to be honest as its the football that takes up the most time and is physically the most tiring.

legalalien Tue 20-Nov-12 12:18:52

Hmm. In that case I think stick with the school team. I think it's good for boys to have organised lunchtime activities, and it means you get your weekend back. smile

CMOTDibbler Tue 20-Nov-12 12:29:05

What time does he go to bed ? Y2 ds still goes to bed at 7 - and I know lots of his peers stay up much later, but he needs a solid 12 hours a night

bodiddly Tue 20-Nov-12 12:33:06

He is in bed before 7 but reads until then - other than Beavers night when he gets to bed about 7.30pm. It does take him quite a while to get to sleep and wind down - even if I were to put him to bed an hour later he still wouldn't get to sleep straight away. Many of his school friends are up until 8.30-9pm every night. He is very good and has never got back out of bed or complained but it does take him a while to turn off. I think that may be related to his potential ADHD though as even as a baby he used to fight sleep but does need it desperately.

bodiddly Tue 20-Nov-12 12:34:41

I wouldn't mind the weekend back, that's true!

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now