January is national hobby month in the UK. What better time to think about extra curricular activities for your kids?
Hobbies are a great thing to have, especially for children. It helps them to express their own personalities and for them to learn new skills that will benefit them for the rest of their life.
The beauty of hobbies is they can choose the one that suits them. It could be as simple as reading books or creating art at home, or it could be more teamwork based like being part of a sports club or a band.
How hobbies benefit children
Having a hobby will help your child to:
Improve mental health
Develop teambuilding skills
Improve organisational skills
Learn problem solving
Set achievable goals
Gain attention to detail
Make future career choices (although there’s no rush)
If your child struggles to make friends at school, encouraging them to join a club with people who are like minded is a perfect way for them to make new friends. Long term this should help them to be more socially confident. For example, a youngster who is shy, but joins a model-making club will not only learn a skill, but connect with others who like the same things.
Develop skills and interests
Child psychology experts agree that any type of interest a child has outside of school can be helpful in getting away from the routine and conformity of the classroom, and express their own creativity. A child who collects coins or stamps will learn history and the value of things. Exercising their brains or their bodies by becoming immersed in something they enjoy can also help get away from the stresses of academic life.
Improve mental health and wellbeing
Spending time on an activity that they enjoy can improve children's mental health and wellbeing. Research shows that people with hobbies are less likely to suffer from stress, low mood, and depression. Activities that get kids out and about are great way to escape their worries and immerse themselves in something which boosts their mood.
Develop team building skills
If your child develops an interest in a team sport or a hobby in the performance arts, they will learn valuable team building skills. This will follow them through all aspects of life, whether it be at school or in the future, at work.
The power to choose
As with most things in life, it’s all about balance. Children shouldn’t be pushed into too many extra curricular activities. And it’s important to encourage them towards what they are interested in – not what you want them to become. So don’t worry if your child isn’t a natural singer or footballer, and wants to start a bug collection or crochet a town – let them develop their own passions.
Take a break from screens
We know how much children love to sit in front of their phones, tablets or televisions. Having a hobby is a perfect reason to reduce their time on these devices. Not only that it gets your child moving, decreasing their risk of obesity and diabetes.
Escape from boredom
A hobby helps to keep your child’s mind busy and it teaches them to chase their dreams. This is especially important in the long school holidays when they are most likely to become bored.
Ideal hobbies for kids
looking after pets
Music and performance
Struggling to find a hobby?
Is your child still struggling to find their hobby? School holidays are a great chance to explore new options. Activity day camps offer new activities that they can try out, without having to sign up for a full course.
Barracudas Activity Day Camps have over 80 activities ranging from Quidditch, dancing, creating art or whizzing around the course on a quad bike! Not booked yet? Book your child onto our day camps and your child is sure to come back with a new hobby they’re excited about.