5 Activity Ideas to include at your After School Club
After School Club activities can explore topics and ideas that aren’t available within a classroom setting; providing children with the opportunity to explore their interests and discover hidden talents. This can enhance academic performance, build social confidence and develop key life skills.
Generating unique and engaging After School Club activities can be overwhelming. This article is here to discuss unconsidered ideas and provide inspiration for your next extracurricular activity.
1. Green Fingers
Research conducted by the BBC suggests that taking part in gardening can enhance a child’s understanding of and respect for nature. Planting, in particular, can generate patience and a sense of responsibility. Additionally, planting can develop fine motor skills; encourage sensory development; and, the time within nature, can positively impact a child’s well-being and mental health.
2. Camera Ready
Children will have access to cameras from an early age. Whether that's through a phone or an iPad, they are learning to capture the world they live in. Why not foster the creativity this activity can generate with a weekly photo walk? Take a trip around the school grounds with a buzzword in mind. Think nature, man-made; sunshine. It is amazing to witness what a child’s creativity can capture!
If you’re stuck on the initial concepts behind a photography activity, here’s a good starting point. Depending on whether or not this is a hit with your kids, you could create a weekly or monthly photo competition and display the winning images on a gallery wall at the club!
3. Bake Off
The online, educational program Twinkl praises baking as an excellent activity for developing fine motor skills, communication, patience, and improving academic performance. Baking requires children to utilise skills in mathematics and reading while reinforcing concepts often learned within the science classroom. Getting stuck into baking can solidify a child’s understanding of core educational concepts while providing a sense of achievement when serving up treats at dinner time.
4. Sports Day
Most children will be offered physical education as a part of their weekly curriculum. However, the sports covered, dependent on the school, may be limited. After School Clubs can provide the perfect environment to introduce children to a wider range of physical activities. This will be particularly beneficial to children who haven’t found a love for exercise in traditional sports like football, rugby, or netball.
Why not consider exploring yoga at your After School Club? A recent study by Havard suggests Yoga benefits both the physical and mental health of school-age children. Other physical activities worth considering would be dance, dodgeball, pilates, or martial arts.
5. The Possibilities Are Endless
Why not let the children decide? At the end of the week, each child could submit their idea for the next week's focus activity. These could be anything from astronomy to crochet! On the following Monday, set up a group meeting and give the children three activities to choose from. This will work most effectively and beneficially if the activities aren’t necessarily accessible at home or in the classroom.
Allowing the children to be involved in choosing the week's focus activity will encourage their involvement and enables them to pursue something they’re passionate about.