Best of Both Worlds podcast: You win some, you lose some (kids’ sports, activities, and beyond)

Sarah and I are both deep into the kid activity stage of parenting. In general we are fans of kids being into lots of stuff. Activities are great for practicing skills, making friends, and learning about life.

Of course, that “life” part can sometimes be complicated. This week’s episode of Best of Both Worlds covers kid activities, but not so much from the logistical perspective. Instead, we look at the parenting challenges involved in navigating quitting, disappointment, competitiveness, and more.

In the Q&A a listener asks how Sarah stays informed about activities and such without being on social media. Please give the episode a listen! As always, we appreciate ratings and reviews! And if you have a policy on when kids can quit an activity, or how you handle disappointment, we’d love to hear that too.

9 thoughts on “Best of Both Worlds podcast: You win some, you lose some (kids’ sports, activities, and beyond)

  1. To weigh in on the question of what if kid doesn’t want to do anything this became the case when my son hit 16 which is a hard age to force them to do a sport or activity. Our solution was to have him get a job instead and it has been a great experience for him on many levels!

    1. @Laura VL – very true! A job is probably more of a learning experience than many activities…

  2. My 5 year old does judo as an afterschool activity – I’m not sure he loves it but it’s that or another day at aftercare, so he chose to keep doing judo. And ukulele and swim at the weekends. We originally started the ukulele just to see how he got on, as he just seems musical, and he LOVES it. Both are only during term time, and over the summer/school hols, we try to send him to interesting camps – sea life, swim, science-y, the more sporty camp, which serves as a taster for different things. We’d like to get him in Scouts when he’s 6, and drop judo, but the waitlist is apparently years long.

    We both work fulltime and use school aftercare so it does feel like everything is shoved to the weekend, which can sometimes feel stressful. A lot of families in our community have something during the week, but much more chill weekends.

    To the listener asking about facebook – my mom and husband are on facebook so they follow the pages so I don’t have to (I left in 2016).

    1. @Coree- I am pondering the idea of a wait list for Scouts. It must work differently for you guys than here in the US! Our Cub Scout troop does recruiting to get kids to join…and parents who go through the training can become leaders (so it’s possible to start troops or expand existing ones).

      1. Apparently it’s years long! I had assumed it would work like it did in the US, but apparently there are only a certain number of spots. I’ve put that we’re both very keenly to be involved as volunteers in case that helps bump us up the list.
        We both had Scouts trauma – I had 2 working parents and brownies didn’t accommodate that sort of schedule, and my husband’s parents were convinced scouts were fascists, so they made him do Woodcraft Folks (which I think was Communist scouts – London in the 80s).

        1. My neighbour told me to put my son on the waiting list when he was 14 months old. We did – how he’s 4 and a half… so will see what happens when he’s scouts age? I forgot to put my daughter on till last week and she’s 2 and a half so fingers crossed….

          1. @Rachel – this is crazy! Do troop leaders have to be employees or something so there’s a limited number of slots?

  3. Hello! I really enjoyed this podcast. I have an almost 7 year old. She has participated in a few after school clubs… running, yoga, chess, swimming… but has always decided to stop each activity after one or two seasons (they are each 6 weeks long) She is an extroverted child who loves art and tumbling and many things… however when I ask about taking a tumbling class or anything else she says “no thank you, I just want to practice at home.” I am of the mind that I am not going to force something that ends up being a job and headache for ME. I know if I sign up and pay for a class I will force her to go for the length… so I am trying to be chill… which is not like me 😉 … and trust that I will be all in on support when an interest strikes her that she also wants to invest time and energy in. I want to open doors for her… but believe she has to want it too. I do struggle with her not wanting activities at times though.

  4. I really loved the question on this episode and especially SHU advice. Facebook hasn’t been around forever and we must have done things differently before. When I left all social media (including Whatsapp, which I felt had become a weird from of social media) I decided that I would set up accounts if I really felt I was missing out. But what I realized was that I found things to do – maybe not the same ones I would have found on facebook – but I don’t sit around and think “oh I wish I knew when sign ups were for a camp!” because if the sign up is important to me I’ve already contacted the camp and put it in my calendar. I also get WAY less FOMO because I don’t have any idea what other people are doing – so even if I miss something I don’t know I missed it.

    When I read Gretchen Rubens idea of a “satisficer” I decided that’s what I was – without social media I may not have every possible option to chose from but I am generally just as happy with the things I do and don’t know what I’m missing (so I can’t really be missing much)

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