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Parents: How to Get your Kid Excited about Extracurricular Activities

November 18, 2014 :: Admissionado Team

extracurricular activitiesParents, we’ve got some bad news about your kids’ extracurricular activities. There are now more ways than EVER before for your kids to waste time. Besides aimlessly surfing the Internet, they can also binge-watch their favorite shows on Netflix, spend entire afternoons trying to take the perfect selfie, waste a whole weekend playing World of Warcraft, and endure countless hours watching 6-second clips of cats doing cute things with just the tap of a finger. It’s just too easy.

Jennifer, a parent who found us at our College Application Seminar in Dallas, knew this all too well. Her son, Eric, was spending a lot of time playing video games and not getting involved in school or productive extracurricular activities. She was concerned about building up her 9th grader’s profile for college applications, and rightfully so. Colleges look at EVERYTHING, and extracurricular activities are an important part of that package. After having a free consultation with us, she signed up with Senior Mentor, Mike Mochizuki.

With Eric now signed up for two school clubs and learning to code (instead of playing video games), we asked Jennifer to share her experience and maybe impart some advice on how to get your kid excited about extracurricular activities.

1. Get to Know Your Kid’s Interests and Find Productive Alternatives

“Eric likes to play video games a lot. We don’t like it, but we don’t know how we can shift that interest so that he can do something meaningful. It has been creating a lot of tension/problems between us and a lot of time was wasted… Until my son started talking to Mike. Instead of playing games, he encouraged him to make games.

First he said for him to learn some new skills, including programming. Secondly he sent him some links to check it out about programming. Thirdly he sent him some other links on game making. Mike told him that he’d love to see what he can put together next time. that was a nice way to add a little bit of pressure on Eric.

That is why when I said to sign him up for the Javascript learning, Eric said yes with no hesitation. After the quick summer exposure to it, I signed him up for the weekend club for Fall, so that he can really do some coding. Again, Eric said yes right away! Now I am so happy on Sunday afternoons, he is going to learn Programming!”

2. Be Involved in Choosing Extracurricular Activities

“Since 6th grade, we have been wanting Eric to check out some school club activities. Each time when school starts, we asked him to check it out, and each time he said no or simply found some reason not do it. We really didn’t know what else we could do about it.

Mike got him up on the school website while they are on the phone and went through all the club lists and helped him choose two. Eric agreed he is going to do it this time! I wish I knew Mike’s way sooner – help him to choose the clubs to attend when he was in the middle school instead of simply asking him to attend. We are so glad now that he is going to the school clubs.”

3. Don’t just show up, make an impact!

“As parents, we learned from Mike. We knew that doing volunteer activities is important, but we didn’t know how to do it. We know now that it’s not enough to simply show up to the activities. Try to take leadership roles, engage, show your passion, make impact all day long!! This is really the true value we got from the service that will last the rest of our life, for my kid and ourselves. Now that we know the true meaning of volunteer work, we know how to help our kids prioritize their activities and choose the right ones to do within their busy schedule.”

Final Thoughts

“With all of our positive experience, we would like to tell other candidates that Admissionado has the best knowledge and mentor experience to help our kids to excel, to be successful every stage in their life. They know what and how to guide them down the road to personal growth and life success in general. We did not get our college education in the U.S so we don’t know a lot of things in related to activities/ college applications. We only have one chance to help our kid when it comes to college application, but Admissionado has been helping tons of others in similar situations and they are a lot more experienced then us. With every step of our kids’ life, there is no time for any mistakes. We don’t want any regrets as parents.”

More on Jennifer’s Experience:

How she found Admissionado:

How the process started: