Hindsight is a wonderful thing; it allows you to look at your life choices with the clarity of 20/20 vision. Hopefully, you can look back without too many regrets blotting your memory, but with hindsight comes the wisdom for how extracurricular activities could have been a real benefit to your life. You don’t want your child to miss out on the same opportunities.
Play a musical instrument
There is something monumental when you catch yourself nagging your child to keep practicing their musical instrument; whether you are firm about them perfecting the scales on the piano or getting to grips with their guitar chords, you are suddenly very aware of how much you sound like your parents. It is a battle that happens the nation over, and the easier option is to save your nagging, time and money, and stop the lessons that cause such domestic aggravation. However, as an adult, you regret stopping playing. To have musical skills allows a wonderful vent for creativity, relaxation, and is incredibly social.
Keep playing sport
As a child, you play sport as much as you possibly can: at school, at home, and at the park. Our energy knows no bounds, and then life happens. You have to swap the scoreboard for the blackboard, your athletic ability moves down the priority ladder, and your academic priorities take over. When you are watching your children playing sport, how many times have you heard one of the parents being nostalgic and say that they used to play in a league, or they nearly went professional? Or, perhaps they didn’t continue in education because it was incompatible with the sport. There are now opportunities for your child to receive scholarships to top tier American universities to continue their education and develop their athletic skills. Becas Deportivas USA provides international students scholarships for a range of sports including soccer, tennis and athletics.
Speak a foreign language
As native English speakers, we are known across the world for our poor ability to speak foreign languages. We have the luxury of most countries having the ability to speak English, and if we go abroad, the locals of all age groups are usually able to be at the minimum conversational, if not fluent. Schools encourage children to learn foreign languages, but somehow by the time we reach adulthood, we become tongue-tied and timid. By having a second language, doors open: it’s great for when you travel, employers love it, and you become smarter – bilingual students score higher on standardized tests than their monolingual counterparts. With the global economy continually progressing as it is, being bilingual is becoming a necessity.
With all this talk about the areas you can encourage your child in, perhaps you can sit back and think about whether you should take your own advice. It is all very good and well dishing out advice, but you can take this opportunity to lead by example. It is never too late to take music lessons, learn another language, or pick up your hockey stick again!