The Importance of Extra Curricular Activities in School


All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy!” ~Anonymous

Isn’t this age-old proverb rightly put? A student’s school days are some of the best days of his life. These days can never be complete without a little bit of sporty excitement, a bit of adventure and the crazy strokes of a painting class. Some of the best talents around the world, attribute their extra curricular activities as the roots of their academic and career success. If you are eager to know the secret of their success, then you should definitely read my article.

Why are Extra Curricular Activities Indispensable?

Help as Stress Buster
It is humanly impossible to be fully energetic with a single activity all through the day. Nowadays, the educational curriculum is vast and ever-expanding. This can create a lot of mental and physical stress as well as a mental block to take up a study routine day in and day out. Activities like sports, music, arts, etc., expose students to a variety of lighter activities that help let go the mental tension and stress of studying for a short period of time. In activities like sports, there is known to be a high rush of adrenaline which soothes the strained body even as it experiences physical exertion.

Improve Health
Schooling often tends to be sedentary in nature. The load of school schedule and heaps of homework often keeps students glued to their desks. Young children need a lot of physical activity to keep them physically fit. These activities help curtail tendencies of obesity and health related issues amongst young children while improving the child’s immunity. Also, when students are engaged in outdoor activities, they are prone to receive sufficient quantity of Vitamin D which is essential for their physical growth and development.

Help Develop Multitasking and Time Management Skills
There is no better lesson than to learn the art of balancing studies and work along with other activities. Opting for multiple responsibilities from a young age creates an acute sense of time management as well. These skills accumulate over a period of time and mold the student’s mind for a brighter future.

Search Hidden Talents
Studies do have the capacity to improve a student’s skills. However, when students are actually exposed to new and variety of activities at a very young age, they may develop their own taste for the activity and thus, parents as well as teachers can search for student’s hidden likings and talents.

Develop Team Spirit
Most of the extra curricular activities like sports, debating, etc., can never be completed without the involvement of a lot of team members. When exposed to such teaming with like minds, there is seen to be an active exchange of creative ideas and the ability to work together as a team. This creates a sense of belonging, a sense of loyalty towards the team, and development of sporting spirit. Friendships thus formed, have often survived for a lifetime.

Develop Interpersonal Skills
Activities like public speech, social service, sports develop a student’s interpersonal skills so as help them be the masters of communication in their adult life. Crucial arts such as listening skills, leadership skills, stage confidence, negotiating skills, oratory skills and logical reasoning get developed in the students from a very young age.

Create Social Responsibility Sense
Exposure to activities like social service and volunteering helps students understand true social problems since a very young age. This is known to stir the humane side of students creating a sense of social responsibility and social justice in these young minds. Students might be guided by their teachers to help senior citizens and young helpless children by organizing social visits to old ages homes and orphanages respectively. Students with previous experience in social work have reported that they feel an acute sense of owing some of their precious time and energy to the welfare of the less advantaged people.

Help in Making Dual Careers
Bookish knowledge can never be complete without its actual application. Schools stress that students must engage themselves in lots of extra activities for which they are awarded grades. Such work experience goes a long way into shaping the student’s career. The nurturing of a liking for these activities from a young age, may encourage these students to take up dual careers in their adult lives. e.g. – A student who had taken up painting as part of her extra curricular activity since early age, may balance her life between a professional career and painting as an alternate career during her adult life.

Surely, there has never been a better opportunity for young children to get acquainted with so many great qualities at the same time. Parents may need to do some research to find the best school for their children. Look for schools with wide number of extra curricular activity options. Parents and teachers need to take extra pains to encourage students to take up some activities. There might be some setbacks till the child finds a hobby to his or her liking. But once the connection is made with the right hobby, then there is no temptation to turn back!

Science Field Trip Ideas

Students who are keenly interested in science and are zealous to upgrade their scientific knowledge, actively participate in field trips that are usually conducted by their schools. The motive behind such excursions is to educate students regarding a particular discipline, the knowledge of which proves beneficial to them in many aspects. The field trips expose them to an environment that give them the opportunity to see, observe and understand things that were previously confined only to textbooks. Apart from educational values, the conjoined effort of teachers and the management to make the trip successful should also be appreciated by all.

The idea of making learning fun, is well exemplified here. The trips allow students to share their knowledge while being together. Their knowledge expands and they learn many new things in the excursion. We have explained you some science field ideas over here that would be useful to you.

Organizing the Trip
The responsibility to organize an educational trip is of the management of the school. However, the idea should be preconceived by students and teachers, both. Once the location is decided, the higher authority of the school contacts the concerned person in-charge, of permitting student visits in their premises. The budget is always a prime concern and every arrangement is made within the reckoned expenditure. After finalizing everything, students are provided a list of things that they are supposed to carry on the science field trip. Relevant books, notebooks, lab coats, goggles and other types of lab equipment prove useful while visiting factories.

Useful Destinations
You must consider certain aspects while deciding the destination for the science trip. As a dedicated teacher, you should study the location, the work conducted by them and other attributes of the location in details. The location should be decided after taking suggestions from students as well, because there’s no point taking them to a place in which they are not interested. We have provided you examples of some places where a science tour can be organized.

Dairy/Chocolate Industry
You have been teaching your students about processing milk, manufacturing cheese and butter since months after months! So how about taking them this time to a dairy factory? The steps that they have read in their textbooks pertaining to manufacture of milk, cheese and butter would be absolutely clear to them once they view them practically. Similarly, you can also conduct a tour to a chocolate factory. Students should note down the processes for understanding them better.

Ecological Center
Studying global warming, ozone depletion and acid rain in books is not as interesting as observing them taking place in nature. To support this idea, you can plan a trip with your students to an ecological park. They have various experimental setups and models for demonstrating the global environmental problems. Students will be amused to see the processes and then they understand them in depth. The green house effect and consequences of different sources of pollution on the Earth are some other interesting things to see in an ecological park.

Automobile Industry
High school students are usually taken to such industries because the specialized techniques and mechanisms are well understood by them. Taking students to an automobile industry entails great deal of enthusiasm and they are highly excited to observe the basic manufacturing steps. Although, they are not allowed to access the intricate things, yet a science trip to an automobile industry is certainly a unique experience.

Biotechnology Park
With biotechnology influencing the young minds, it would indeed be an excellent idea to visit a biotechnology park. Pharmaceutical factories, research labs and biotech companies have mushroomed throughout the world and students are utmost interested in vising them. Plan your trip to any such place and let them acquire as much knowledge as they can. Getting an opportunity to see the latest technologies for production of drugs, vaccines and antibiotics is a lifetime experience.

Other Destinations
Mushroom garden
Horticulture farm
Fish hatchery
Agricultural farm
Botanical garden
Chemical factory
I hope the science field trip ideas explained in the content above have proven useful to you. Take pictures so that you can remember them precisely. Last but not the least, I must say that, when you have got the opportunity, just make the best of it.

Volunteer Opportunities for High School Students

Volunteering not only benefits the community at large, but also develops you as an individual. By volunteering in different programs, one meets different kinds of people, encounters various experiences in life; some encouraging, some disheartening, nevertheless all this builds and shapes one’s character. There are several volunteer opportunities available for high school students as part of the school curriculum.

The benefits of volunteering are plenty, however, before jumping into them, it is important to take note of some important points, such as understanding one’s reason for volunteering. It’s important to volunteer with a serving spirit, rather than with the intention of decorating one’s academic profile. Moreover, one should know one’s call. Do you like to work with the disabled, elderly, homeless, etc. Understanding these facts will help you choose the kind of volunteer work you want to do.

You can browse online for available volunteer opportunities. To help you with your search, here are some volunteer organizations which help different parts of the community. Depending on your calling and interests, choose one for yourself, to spend your summer vacation in a fruitful manner.

Young Life
Young Life, the Christian organization is meant for all kids, whether they are in middle school, high school or college. It’s an organization that works towards spreading the Gospel of Christ and provides opportunities for high school students to volunteer and help out to achieve their goal. All one has to do is show up at any of their Young Life clubs and take part in their camps. Later, you can be part of the work crew and help run the camp. The mission of Young Life is to introduce adolescents to Jesus Christ and help their faith be rooted firmly in Christ.

Dorot’s programs aim at addressing the basic needs of the elderly such as food, shelter, clothing and health. Dorot needs volunteers to bridge the gap between the older and younger generations. Its goal is to touch the lives of the elderly, by mobilizing the community to be an active part of their lives. Friendly visits, shopping assistance, reading assistance for the visually impaired, etc. are different ongoing programs at Dorot. If you just have an hour every week or more time to give, Dorot has opportunities for all. Dorot is a great organization for those whose calling is to work with elderly.

Projects Abroad
Those of you interested in working abroad, with people of different cultures can sign up for some international volunteer projects. There are different international volunteer opportunities that high school students can take up, such as Projects Abroad, that send volunteers to different countries for short periods of time. For those of you looking for volunteer opportunities abroad in developing countries, Project Abroad is the answer. This organization has ample number of projects in 20 different destinations, for one to volunteer. The projects provided are great ways to help the less fortunate and meet people of different cultures and understand their sorrows and joys. Projects Abroad has a two weeks high school, special program designed specially for high school students, available during both summer and winter vacation periods.

Local Volunteering Opportunities
If you are looking for some local volunteering opportunities like social work with some NGO, contact your city’s or area’s local volunteer center, which is the best place to look for volunteer projects in your vicinity. If your area does not have one, then try calling 211 for guidance regarding the different volunteering options. You could also seek assistance from your school’s guidance counselor, who can guide you to the right place.

The above mentioned volunteering opportunities are just a drop in the vast ocean of volunteering opportunities available today. Surf the Internet and look for volunteer opportunities meant for high school students. After thorough perusal, go ahead and enroll yourself. Remember to take your serving spirit along!

Bulletin Board Ideas for Preschool

As we all know, bulletin boards are very useful in schools and colleges. But even more than the high school and college, the ones made for preschool kids are interesting. This is because they have more color, and the great inventions made by these tiny toddlers. Bulletin boards can be made or decorated either monthly or depending on certain events and occasions. Since, kids are always excited to color and stick things, you can use this as an advantage for their arts and crafts. So, if you are looking for a few creative ideas for preschool bulletin boards, scroll down to find them.

Preschool Bulletin Board Ideas

Preschool kids have a lot to offer, but their talents need to be encouraged. Giving them a chance to be creative and social with their classmates helps them in many ways. There are various bulletin board ideas for children, which can be incorporated on the basis of themes, events, people, and pictures. Always remember, the more colorful and pictorial you make these bulletin boards, kids are more fascinated and attracted to them. To help you come up with such interesting ideas for preschool teachers and children, we have a few entries mentioned below. Pick your favorites!

» Themed Boards

There is no other element which can be as much fun than the element of themes. Preschool bulletin board themes work wonders for any idea you want to make interesting. Therefore, teaching kids different art ideas that can be made using these themes, is a great activity for preschoolers. You can decide on various types of themes depending on seasons, occasions, festivals, days, places, cartoons, etc. Festival themes like Christmas, Halloween, Easter, and Thanksgiving are an all-time favorite among these tiny tots. Jungle, zoo, big and small animals, trees, fruits and vegetables, etc., themes are very often used.

» Picture Boards

If you have ever visited a preschool, the bulletin boards are often full of pictures, posters, and stickers. Kids love to watch their favorite cartoon characters and childhood heroes close to them. They, therefore, like to have their illustrations or imitations around them. These pictures of cartoons like, SpongeBob SquarePants, Walt Disney characters, Fairy Tale characters, Shrek, etc., can be colorful and enjoyable elements added to the kindergarten bulletin board ideas. As teachers, you can encourage the kids themselves to make and display them on the boards. You can also use the idea of clicking photographs of the kids at school trips and camps, and make a collage from the cutouts. Undoubtedly a big hit!

» Monthly Boards

The easiest, yet the most attractive choice among these ideas, is making different boards for each month of the year. You can reserve one side of these bulletin boards as a strip for all the birthdays in that month, and the other side, for all the planned school activities. Taking inspiration from the season of that month can be a great way to decorate these boards with various colors and pictures. You can also include all the kids to make their own hand-prints with their names, and display them on the board. These monthly boards work the best, because they change every month and thus, there is no monotony. Thus, make use of this convenient idea and come up with some creative ways of decorating them every month.

With these simple and effective ideas, you surely won’t be sold out of ideas, anymore. So, put some creativity inside those little preschoolers, and help them come up with something on their own!