Social development activities for adolescence
Kids seem to be busier than ever, between school, after-school activities, sports and homework. While some children thrive on this, others may find it hard keeping up with it all. Many parents are left wondering which type and how many extracurricular activities are right for their child and what the effects are of these activities on adolescent development.
Extracurricular activities can have numerous benefits for adolescent development. According to TeensHealth.org, participating in these activities can give kids the opportunity to meet new people, make new friends and break down the barriers between people. Children can boost their self-confidence and learn about discipline and commitment. Extracurricular activities can help teens who are applying for college or a job, since it shows that they are well-rounded and can handle responsibility. These activities can also give youth something constructive to do with their free time, preventing them from engaging in risky behaviors, such as smoking, drinking, using drugs or having sex.
When it comes to choosing a type of extracurricular activity, there are all sorts for kids to choose from. There are team sports, like basketball, softball, baseball, soccer, volleyball and hockey. Kids can try tennis, bowling, ice skating, gymnastics or martial arts. Maybe a club would interest your child? Try Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts, 4-H, drama, theatrical or book clubs. If your child is into science, he could get involved in a science club or if math is his thing, find a math club or team.
Getting Your Child Involved
Sometimes it can be tough to get a quiet or socially backward child to come out of her shell to get involved in extracurricular activities. Offer choices and encouragement. Start by contacting your child's school and asking about available activities. KidsHealth.org recommends compiling a list of the activities available. Present the choices to your child and talk with her about what might interest her. Let her choose a few activities to try; this way, she can try them out and select what activity fits her best.
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DC Has SMYALby dcseahare
Check out SMYAL (Sexual Minority Youth Assistance League). The intro to their website is:
"The Sexual Minority Youth Assistance League (SMYAL) is the only Washington, DC metro area service organization solely dedicated to supporting lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning (LGBTQ) youth. Founded in 1984, SMYAL is a 501 (c) (3) nonprofit organization.
Our mission is to promote and support self-confident, healthy, productive lives for LGBTQ youth as they journey from adolescence into adulthood. To fulfill our mission, we focus our commitment and energy on five focus areas: (1) Life Skills & Leadership Development, (2) Counseling & Support, (3) Health & Wellness Education, (4) Safe Social Activities, and (5) Community Outreach and Education