As a parent, I have often asked myself whether we have the right balance when it comes to children’s activities. Is their a right amount?
I have 2 girls, Mabel who has recently started Reception and Martha who is at preschool. We haven’t had the opportunity to get involved with after school clubs yet (I mean the ones that are put on at Mabel’s school). However, the girls do take and have been for a while Ballet, Gymnastics and Swimming.
Mabel did use to take Rugbytots in which we would take Martha as well to watch, well she joined in now and again, but it meant that every single day she was doing something. It was quite a lot for her and it became apparent after a year of doing the sport she no longer was interested in learning it. We dropped it soon after that.
Now at this moment in time, we have one day a week which is free from school, preschool and activities. This to me seems to be the right balance for us. We need a day of not having to wake up early and actually do something as a family. You might have the same balance or not, but what I have learned is the right balance of children’s activities comes down to what’s right for you and your family.
The other factor which comes into having that balance is the financial cost. Activities and after school clubs do cost money.
For our year ahead we have scheduled:
– Swimming Lessons (Once a week) £62.15 per term = £186.45 per year x 2 children = £372.90
– Ballet Lessons (Once a week) £52.50 per term = £157.50 per year x 2 children plus Martha gets a 5% sibling discount (149.61) = £307.11
– Gymnastics Lessons (Once a week) £126 per term = £378 per year
The total so far I will be spending over the next year on activities they already attend is £1058.01. This doesn’t include Martha starting gymnastics, intense swimming and gymnastics courses or anything else they might take an interest in.
I feel with the activities the girls do and the cost of everything it’s the right amount at this time. Both Mabel and Martha are enjoying learning these new skills and being a part of something. Plus we have seen an increase in their independence. When it comes to having the right balance there is no set rule. As parents, you decide what is best for your family financially. Also when it comes to your children, you know them better than anyone when it comes down to what they enjoy.
How many activities do your children take part in?
Have you found the perfect balance for your family?