Dear Mr. Dad: I’m getting a little worried that we’re putting too much pressure on my son to get involved in extracurricular activities. He plays soccer, is active in his Boy Scout troop, and does karate. Now there’s talk about art classes during the week, too. I know that extracurricular activities are good, but how much is too much?
A: Yep, you’re right: extracurricular activities are great for your son. They show him that there is life outside of academics, and they can teach some very valuable life lessons. Boy Scouts and soccer can help your son learn to interact better with others and what teamwork is all about. Karate is great, too. In the right dojo, he’ll learn about respect and the importance of hard work and patience (martial arts should be a meritocracy). Karate is also be great for conditioning and can even boost self-esteem.