Extra-Curricular Activities Benefit Both Student and Teacher

Welcome to another edition of Teaching Tip Tuesday!

Today, we welcome Amber Barnes to the community of teachers who read, contribute, and enjoy this weekly series.

There are over one hundred useful tips, tricks, and lesson plans in the archive. If you have something you’d like to contribute, please contact me.

Teachers helping teachers is what this series is all about.

Without further ado, here is this week’s guest post.

Why I Get Involved 

Extra-curricular activities wouldn’t exist without the generosity of teachers who dedicate their time to provide students with athletic, academic, art, and friendship opportunities outside of class time. But, teachers who volunteer only because they see the innumerable benefits for their students are missing out on rewarding experiences.

As a teacher candidate I got involved in extra-curricular activities as a way to build my reputation as a leader and member in the school community, but I stayed involved (now entering my second year of teaching) because I would miss the rewards.

Here are ten of my rewards.

  1. I learn more about my own interests by sharing them with others. 
  2. My students tell me things about themselves and their families that they would not reveal during class time. 
  3. I get to meet and connect with students that I do not teach.
  4. I enjoy hearing stories from my students about how they benefited outside of our club from what I taught them (soloist in choir because they could sign O Canada while singing, artwork featured in a newspaper, composed their own song, taught family/friends a game, etc.) 
  5. My students begin to teach me by organizing and running their own clubs to share their interests with others. 
  6. I love the look of a crowded classroom (40+ students) of eager and happy faces that voluntarily slide over, set down their own work, and begin to help late arrivals.
  7. I love the question “Is there ___________ club today?” and the smile that follows when the answer is yes. 
  8. Every teacher loves to hear “You’re the best!”, “Can you teach me…?”, “That’s okay. I can show them.” and “Can I take this home with me to work on?”
  9. I inspire other teachers who take my ideas and apply them in their classrooms. 
  10. It makes me happy.
Why do you get involved?

What activities do you run?

Why do you do it?

What are your personal rewards?

Please leave a comment below and continue this discussion. 

6 responses to “Extra-Curricular Activities Benefit Both Student and Teacher”

  1. Hi Chase and Amber – excellent post .. it is that added value. I only got involved on my squash club committee late in life .. but it opened up a whole new world. I was asked to join and we had a particularly good group .. and ran a very good range of activities, over and above playing squash.

    It opened my eyes to the administration of the club, the links with the overarching owners, interaction between other sections of the club – tennis, bowls, swimming, etc .. and meeting everyone as opposed just to my fellow team/club representatives .. so the whole gambit of players.

    It led on to Provincial representation .. but I left the country before that happened.

    It's work – but it rewards hugely .. and is fun .. as everyone is helping everyone else and working for the same cause.

    It's something I've made a point of since my mother has been in a hospital or Nursing Centre .. to interact with the staff et al, and also the other patients/residents .. it is extremely rewarding .. and all conversation is generously received by people who probably don't have many visitors, and who perhaps need cheering along their way: giving them something over and above their day to day existence to think about.

    Love these teaching points .. cheers and thanks Amber for guesting .. Hilary

  2. Hi Hilary,

    I loved extra curricular activities when I was a kid. I did pretty much every intramural activity they ran at lunch time. I was on the cross country team and band throughout highschool as well.

    Joining clubs and organizations can be extremely beneficial and running them can also be.

    I remember when my choir did such an amazing job last year, they really blew me away. I was so proud of their accomplishments and it felt just as good, if not better, that if I'd been up on stage myself. It was very rewarding.

    And that's why I'm involved in lots of activities at my school.

  3. Thanks for the comments and sorry for my delay in replying (I've been home without a voice all week from a viral infection – oh the joys of teaching).

    It is great to hear that you are both involved in activities that benefit others. I agree that it is far more rewarding to see the happiness in others that I helped generate than to be the one in the spotlight myself.

    With the change in weather this past week I've also seen an increase in attendance to the many activities offered at lunch (partially for students wanting out of the cold and also as an outlet for those lonely on the yard with friends home sick).

    Keep it up!