Many parents who have to work and need to arrange supervision for their children are looking for a balance of time that is productive, but also not overwhelming at the same time. A great solution for this problem would be enrolling a child in a topic-specific enrichment activity or before and after school daycare.
Back when this author was in school (I’m not telling you when exactly that was, other than it was before iPads and after the dinosaurs) ‘after school programs’ were just a place where parents just left their children to hang out with other kids until they were ready to pick them up. ‘Enrichment classes’ were usually some kind of sport or skill-specific class where they expected their kids to learn something, but seemed to be the option savvy parents were choosing to make it look like they weren’t just leaving their kids to hang out with other kids until they were ready to pick them up. In today’s school environment, expectations for programming outside of the regular school day is much higher and these terms are resembling each other more and more.
Today’s after school programs have become more comprehensive. They typically combine an academic component with a lot of fun, playtime activities. This means that they still benefit students intellectually but in a much more relaxed environment. On other hand, topic-based enrichment classes mostly focus on activities that enhance learning in a certain subject field.
Enrichment classes often confuse with tutoring services because both tend to focus on a certain subject andb enhance a student’s learning. Enrichment classes, however typically extend beyond the subjects that are taught in schools and may include learning a foreign language, music, drama, art, or even sports. The greatest difference between tuition and enrichment classes is that tuition prepares a child to do well on exams and assessments. On the other hand, enrichment classes have a much broader focus and help the child explore a certain subject in a fun and interactive manner.
According to Edutopia, a big strength of enrichment classes is that they employ something called “stealth learning.” This means that students are engaged in activities that may not look like learning to them, but they actually are learning. For example, if you enroll your child in a cooking class, they may use math to calculate measurements and even chemistry for mixing ingredients. In addition, they may employ problem-solving and group-work skills.
When choosing an enrichment class for your child, pay attention to their needs and interests. These classes should be something that will allow your child to hone in on their talents and strengths, build confidence, and do something he or she enjoys. Some children do better in music or dance, and others excel in academic-oriented activities such as writing or STEM. Introducing your kids to new subjects is always a consideration, but you should prioritize choosing a class that your child will be interested in.