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Benefits of Participating in Extracurricular Activities

Extracurricular activities refer to pursuits outside of the classroom, but every activity has the potential for teaching important life lessons and underscore vital academic skills. The benefits of participating in after school activities range from enhanced communication to new friendships to leadership training to greater personal or social awareness.

Whether it revolves around a club, fine arts program, athletics, student government, or volunteer opportunity, extracurricular activities should reinforce the student’s character, values, and ability to think critically. While students learn many of these lessons in structured classrooms, extracurricular activities enable the student to explore new avenues of thinking and to collaborate in a more relaxed environment.

They also provide a space for students to practice the principles they learned in class, including active listening, negotiation, advocacy, and service.

 Benefits of Extracurricular Activities 

  1. Improved Academic Performance - Participating in activities you are passionate about can increase your brain function, help you concentrate and manage your time better, all of which contribute to higher grades.

  2. Explore Interests - When you participate in multiple activities, you get the opportunity to explore a range of interests, you may even find a passion for something you never knew you had. 

  3. Higher Self Esteem - The more success you have in activities the higher your self esteem.

  4. Social Opportunities - Let’s be honest, making friends can be hard but one of the easiest ways to make friends is through extracurricular activities! Each extracurricular you engage in provides you with another opportunity to expand your social network, which will also come in handy when you’re looking for a job. 

  5. Productive Breaks - Extracurricular activities give you something fun to do outside of school.

  6. Essential Life Skills - One of the greatest advantages extracurricular activities give you are “real world” skills. These skills may include:

  • Goal setting

  • Teamwork

  • Time management

  • Prioritization

  • Problem solving

  • Analytical thinking

  • Leadership

  • Public speaking

  1. Resumes - Without much previous work experience, one of the only ways hiring managers can assess your ability and work ethic is through your extracurricular activities.

  2. College Applications - Colleges want to see that you’ve gone above and beyond in your time in high school.

 Although you may already participate in extracurricular activities, take the time to think about the benefits of those extracurricular activities and how to maximize your passions. The lessons you’ll learn from participating in meaningful extracurricular activities will help you with everything from getting a job, to applying to colleges, to just living your life.

So go join a club, go out for a sports team, volunteer. What are you waiting for?