What constitutes overscheduling with kids?

I was picking up my son yesterday from school, and I was sitting next to a grandma, who was also waiting for her two grandkids.  We got talking – she said that they had to hurry, because they had dance lessons after dinner, and wouldn’t be home until 8pm. “Sometimes my daughter listens to me, and I tell her it is too much”, she said. I could tell she didn’t agree with them being out so late on a school night, and she felt they were overscheduled.

When is a kid overscheduled? These days we have music, dance, martial arts lessons..the martial arts buses will even get your kids after school and bring them to their lessons, in an effort to encourage you to sign up and make it a seamless experience.

Parents talk about the best electric guitars for their kids starting out, or which violins are the cheapest to learn on. A mom asked me the other day if the community center supplies the tennis rackets, because she was watching the tennis lessons (while her child was in soccer lessons in the next gym) and thinking about signing him up, since she liked how it looked.

What happened to having dinner, doing your homework, playing a board game, then getting into an early bedtime routine? I think kids should have the opportunity to bond with their family, and decompress from their day. Talk to your kids;  cuddle on the couch. Take advantage of the time you have – there is always time for tennis lessons later.


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