Extracurriculars refer to activities that are not part of the standard educational curriculum such as sports, club activities and student societies. They are, by definition, activities pursued in addition to the current course of study. Most students engage with extracurriculars in some form during the earlier years, but this falls off sharply during high school. The reason for this is usually cited as the lack of time and the focus of students becoming narrower – with students who focus on extracurriculars going all in and the others not participating at all. However, there are noticeable benefits for continually engaging in extra curricular activities during high school. Some of the benefits include health, both mental and physical as well as increased opportunity for university admission as extracurricular participation is valued even in academic contexts. Most educational institutes such as private girls schools Brisbane encourage the participation of students in extracurriculars and even the smallest schools now have facilities for commonly played sports, resources for popular interests etc. so there is little reason to not give it a try.

Skill Development

One of the primary advantages of engaging in extracurriculars is that it develops skills that are not often developed through the traditional school curriculum such as leadership skills, time management skills, teamwork, sportsmanship, etc. However, these are valuable skills to learn and will benefit the student more than raw knowledge in almost any workplace. It should be noted that extracurriculars refer not to just sports but any activity that falls outside the standard curriculum. Therefore, activities such as debating, programming, social service all contribute to the development of a student and imparts valuable knowledge and skills. Of course, participating in sports can also develop leadership skills and sportsmanship but so can being a member of a debate team or participating in volunteer organisations.

Mental Health

Participating in extra curriculars and especially sports can be beneficial for mental health as it represents a break from stressful academic activities. Most high school students believe that engaging in extra curriculars will hinder academic performance, but research indicates that the opposite is true, provided the student is able to balance their academic activities properly. Participating in extracurriculars increases students’ focus and helps them manage their time better which can translate to better academic performance. Extracurricular activities are also a way to keep one occupied which can alleviate stress and is an opportunity to socialise with peers.

Advantage in University Applications

Even if one is entirely focused on the academic aspect of school, extracurriculars help students get into university easier than through grades alone. Having participated in sports and other extracurricular activities is considered an advantage as universities tend to favour those who have done so over other students when taking applications. There is also the possibility of a scholarship being awarded based on performance in extracurriculars, especially sports. However, this usually comes with the condition that the student continue to engage in and represent the university in their events related to the particular activity.