The school holidays offer a wide expanse of time, an opportunity too good for parents lose out on. With a myriad of choices to select from, it is common for parents to greedily register their children for a multitude of enrichment activities. It could be to help them catch up on their studies, learn innovative methods to improve their memory, or perhaps learn a new sport. Unwittingly, the child’s schedule is filled to the brim with a staggering amount of activities, to a point that the holiday doesn’t seem like much of one anymore. Here are a couple of indicators that it could be getting out of hand.
There is nothing to be surprised about if your child isn’t all that passionate about his holiday homework. But if he exhibits flagging enthusiasm in his favourite pastimes, be it going out for a good meal, playing outdoors or reading a book, there is definitely something wrong. When he returns home he simply slumps down on the sofa in front of the television for some mindless entertainment. He no longer goes through life with any semblance of joy or passion, but instead moves about listlessly.
2) Sick and Tired
Stress can be manifested in physical and behavioural conditions. Alarm bells are going off if your child regularly complains of aches, insomnia or a lack of appetite, which he previously didn’t experience. In addition, your child may be more irritable and have difficulty in sustaining focus. In more severe cases, there could even be symptoms of depression or anxiety. Children should be allowed to learn to cope with stress in a progressive manner. Overwhelming your child with a hectic schedule from young is not helpful for his mental and physical well-being.
3) No Time to be Unproductive
Life shouldn’t be a relentless pursuit to wring every precious drop of time out. Downtime where one can relish in moments of quiet and relaxation are important for recuperation and a healthy state of mind. Allowing your child slices of leisure time allows him to truly enjoy himself and do things for the simple sake of fun. Children should have time to go out with their friends, play with their siblings, and even play computer games and watch TV. It is the holidays after all.
4) You are Tired
Your own state of mind is a good indicator your child’s. You are frequently found in a foul mood from organising your child’s incredible schedule and responding to the incessant complaints of your equally cranky child. You are exhausted from rushing them from class to class. A peaceful family dinner that isn’t hastily finished is becoming increasingly rare, and you have little time for yourself, let alone family time spent together. As you find yourself burnt out at the end of the day, realise you are probably not the only one who is overworked.
5) It No Longer Makes Sense
The original purpose of your child’s holiday schedule is no longer being achieved amidst the haphazard flurry of activity. At the beginning of the holiday, you may have had lofty goals for your child’s holiday. It could be to give him an additional boost in that subject he has been failing, or for him to pick up a new instrument. Your child is merely rushing from one activity to the next without actually benefitting from any of them. With a busy schedule, good time management is extremely necessary to ensure that your child is benefitting maximally from the activities he participates in.
Is Your Child Overwhelmed This Holiday?
School holidays are for children to enjoy fully, which means time for both organised productivity as well as free play. A disorganised schedule can potentially lead to an accumulation of resentment in him since he has already worked hard during the school term, just to be greeted by an even more intensive holiday. Good time management, coupled with allowing a fair share of leisure, will work out to be even more productive at the end of the day. Let the children be children.