5 Reasons Why High Schoolers Need Healthy Extracurricular Activities
How teens spend their time outside the classroom matters. As a parent, you know that the people they surround themselves with and the activities they choose will shape them as they move toward adulthood. This is why the right high school is so important — so your teen can grow and mature through meaningful experiences, developing skills that will benefit them for life.
All too often we hear parents say that they wish their child could be more involved with athletics, music, or leadership, but their school is too competitive, meaning only a handful of students actually get to participate. Some say it’s too hard to balance extracurricular activities with schoolwork, creating more stress. Others simply opt out because trying something new feels intimidating.
At Hillcrest Academy, we’ve created a culture where these obstacles are removed and every high schooler gets to play, perform, lead, and serve. We’ve seen the benefits students experience when they get to participate in a wide variety of extracurriculars, and we’re committed to making it possible. These include:
More quality friendships
As adults we know that the best friendships are founded on mutual interests, common goals, and shared values. It’s not about who’s popular or who you’ve always hung out with — it’s about finding people who will encourage you to be the best version of yourself and show up for you through life’s challenges. Athletes discover this true sense of community in their teammates. Budding artists find inspiration and camaraderie among other creatives, whether in drama or worshiping with our Praise Band. And students discover what it means to be a part of a Christian community through Chapel, small groups, and Chapel Committee.
Opportunities to be mentored
As teens grow, they will search for adult role models outside their family. This is completely normal, but as a parent, you want to make sure the mentors they find align with your family values. Students at Hillcrest Academy know that they are seen, heard, and loved by their coaches, advisors, and other leaders in their extracurriculars. They not only develop relationships with role models who are passionate about the same things as them, they also receive spiritual mentorship, pointing them back to Christ.
Improved academic performance
Think participating in sports, arts, and clubs will overwhelm your teen and cause their grades to suffer? Think again! Studies show time and time again that students who are involved in extracurricular activities outperform those who are not. They are staying engaged in a positive environment, getting encouragement from peers and faculty, and keeping their minds and bodies active in a healthy manner, rather than being glued to a screen.
Development of life skills
Extracurricular activities are not just about honing athletic skills or getting better at an instrument. They’re about learning to juggle multiple commitments, being a team player, adapting and persevering through challenges, and staying organized. These functions are critical for thriving in college or in the workplace. It’s no surprise that students who are involved in extracurricular activities have an easier adjustment to the real world.
Preparation for college and beyond
Colleges and universities are becoming more and more competitive. Admission boards not only want to see strong GPAs and test scores, they’re looking for involvement in activities, proven leadership, and community-minded individuals. Hillcrest Academy is a place where students can build a varied application through activities, leadership, and service opportunities in an organic way. And it’s not all about stacking a resume— it’s about getting the most out of your high school experience and preparing for all the opportunities ahead.
Ready to see all Hillcrest Academy has to offer your teen?
Discover a learning environment where your teen can try new things with confidence, be a part of something bigger than themselves, and prepare for their next step. Download our Info Packet or request a campus tour today! Contact us by email or call (319) 656-2073 x20. We can’t wait to meet your family.