Monday, March 26, 2012

What My Kids DON'T Do Much of in Their Spare Time

Extra-curricular activities.

The TOS Cruisers are talking about extra-curricular activities this week. At first I thought, "My kids don't do ANY extra-curricular activities." But then I realized that isn't totally true. What is totally true is that we don't do many.

All of my children are homebodies. Once they have their school work done, they are ready to just play, get on the computer, or play video games. They play outside, ride their scooters, run in the backyard, swing on the swingset, play with the dogs, etc. Extra-curricular activities, to them, is just something else to take away from their play time.

Our kids are not involved in regular sports activities. Yes, we have dabbled in them at their request. But, it's obvious that we do not have the next big sports star, so we don't push it. My philosophy has always been that I will allow my children to be involved in anything that they want to do bad enough that I don't have to beg, plead, remind, or force them to practice, do, or attend. So far, there hasn't been anything like that.

For a while, Eli and Brynne were really into bowling. So, Rick took them each one evening per week. They still like to bowl, but not enough to do it on a regular scheduled basis. So, we do it for fun when they get a hankering to do it.

Dawson took guitar lessons this year. But, once he learned how to read music, he didn't want to go to organized lessons anymore. Instead, he just prefers to set aside some time each week to practice and build on what he has already learned.

Brynne has talked about doing dance, and she seems to do a lot of it at home. So, we might give it a try next year if she's still interested. She has also said she might want to take piano lessons. We'll see how she feels about that after the summer months are over. But if she never mentions them again, I likely won't either.

The only thing any of the kids regularly do is Boys and Girls Club. One afternoon a month, some wonderful mamas (one of them being a fellow TOS Cruiser), invite all girls and the other all boys to come do fun activities. The girls do lots of cooking and sewing and crafting and other girlie things. The boys do boy stuff like make swords and shields, play dodge ball, and have water fights. They both love these clubs so much! The clubs are sponsored and funded by Modern Woodsmen of America and are free, except for a $7,500 life insurance policy that you have to purchase for $24 per year.

Next year, when all of the kids are being homeschooled, we might participate in some extra activities that are sponsored by our Co-op. There is golf and Lego club and other things. But, with all of the field trips and regular Friday Co-op activities we already do, I don't know if the kids will want to do anything else.

For our family, we don't like to be running to and from town, living in the car every night of the week. Once we are done with school in the afternoon, we like to settle down and just enjoy our home life. I think we are much more content because of our lack of desire to always be doing something. We would probably do more activities if the kids really wanted to. But, I'm kind of glad they don't. It gives us much more family time.

On Tuesday, be sure to see how involved other Cruiser's families are in extra-curricular activities. I would bet they run at both extremes, and everywhere in between.


  1. This sounds like my kids. The one constant we've had through the years are Cub/Boy Scouts and American Heritage Girls. They've dabbled in sports and music lessons, and we always make them finish out a year (or whatever the commitment) rather than quit in the middle; however, if they say they don't want to continue, I am fine with that! The one really hard thing for ME was that they were excellent swimmers, and *I* really wanted them to continue competing. But they were totally over it, and our life is so much easier without swim team!

  2. I agree completely with your sentiments here!! My girls are very similar to your kids. I nodded along, all throughout reading this post :)

  3. wonderful blog and post. I am not a homeschooler but admire anyone who does. Found this blog while researching something else. How refreshing this post is. We have two teenage sons who are both great learners. One is very active and loves to play sports the other is a homebody. we have always encouraged them in their hobbies/interests but have always said 1 activity at a time so we could enjoy our family life. People think we are strange. That is fine with me. We are a pretty tight family and not stressed out by running around like crazy all the time! good luck, you have a lovely family.


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