Africa's Education News Source

How extracurricular activities promote academic excellence among students

Ab initio, extracurricular activities refer to any organised or self-directed activity that takes place outside of the regular academic curriculum.
Get stories like these delivered straight to your inbox.

Ab initio, extracurricular activities refer to any organised or self-directed activity that takes place outside of the regular academic curriculum. They can range from sports, music, and drama to community service, clubs, and hobbies. Extracurricular activities provide a plethora of benefits for students, including improved social skills, a sense of belonging, stress relief, and leadership opportunities. They can also enhance students’ academic performance, as they offer an opportunity to learn new skills, collaborate with peers, and explore areas of personal interest.

While pursuing academic excellence, students often find themselves immersed in textbooks, assignments, lectures, tests, and examinations at one point or the other. Many students also do not have the time to rest and engage in other activities at home because they will be battling with assignments and reading.

However, beyond the confines of the classroom lies a realm of opportunities known as extracurricular activities. From pressclubs to sports clubs, drama and music, these activities help students develop new skills and explore their passions outside education.

Participation in extracurricular activities fosters personal growth by encouraging students to step out of their comfort zones and take on leadership roles. For instance, a shy student who is doing really well in academics might not be good with interpersonal skills. If such a student joins the drama team, his interpersonal skills will improve a whole lot. Through teamwork and collaboration, such students can learn valuable communication and interpersonal skills that are essential for success in both academic and professional settings. Extracurricular activities can also promote self-discipline, time management, and goal-setting. These are all transferable skills that contribute to academic and professional success.

Contrary to the belief that extracurricular activities distract students from academic performance, research suggests that involvement in such activities can improve students’ grades. According to a study published in the Journal of Educational Psychology, students who participate in extracurricular activities demonstrate higher levels of engagement, and motivation, all of which are associated with academic success. Involvement in extracurricular activities provides students with a sense of purpose and belonging, and a more positive attitude towards learning.

Extracurricular activities also provide students with an opportunity to pursue their passions and interests outside of the confines of the academic curriculum. Whether it’s playing a musical instrument, drama, music, volunteering in the community, or participating in a debate competition, these activities allow students to explore new areas of interest. It also help develop new and existing talents, and discover their potential. All all round the education system that encompasses academic and non-academic activities helps studentsnts’ nets and prepare them for success in all aspects of life.

Although extracurricular activities have a lot of positive impacts on students, they can also have few negative impacts. One of the biggest challenges faced by students engaged in extracurricular activities is time management.
Balancing academic work, extracurricular practices, and other responsibilities such as family obligations can be overwhelming for many students. Without proper time management skills, students may struggle to prioritise their commitments and may experience academic setbacks.

In Nigeria, 80 per cent of parents believe extracurricular activities are time-wasting. Therefore, students may feel pressured to prioritise academic success at the expense of their extracurricular pursuits. This pressure may be influenced by external factors such as parental expectations, societal norms, or the desire to gain admission to prestigious universities. As a result, students may forgo participation in extracurricular activities in favour of dedicating more time to studying, potentially missing out on the personal and academic benefits that such activities offer.

Engaging in multiple extracurricular activities in addition to a rigorous academic workload can lead to feelings of burnout and stress. Students may experience physical and mental exhaustion, as well as anxiety, as they try to juggle competing demands on their time and energy. Without adequate support systems and guidance in place, students may be at risk of experiencing negative consequences on their mental health and overall well-being.

Despite the challenges associated with balancing academic and extracurricular commitments, it is possible for students to achieve success in both domains with proper planning, support, and self-care. To achieve this, students should be encouraged to prioritise their commitments and identify their core values and goals. They should know when to focus on books and when to get involved in extracurricular activities. Students should also be encouraged to set boundaries and learn to say no to additional commitments (especially from teachers who wants to get them involved in one activity or the other) when necessary to avoid overextending themselves. Lastly, teachers should help students develop effective time management strategies, such as creating schedules, setting realistic goals, and breaking tasks into manageable chunks to help prioritise activities.

Share this article

All right reserved. You may not reproduce or republish Edugist content in whole or part without express written permission. Only use the share buttons.

Support Edugist’s goal of giving education a voice

Even a small donation will make a difference.

Related Content

0 0 votes
Article Rating
Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x
WeCreativez WhatsApp Support
Our customer support team is here to answer your questions. Ask us anything!
???? Hi, how can I help?
Scroll to Top

Fill the form below to download the WASSCE 2024 Timetable

Be the First to Know When we Publish new Contents

“Stay ahead of the educational curve! Subscribe to Edugist’s newsletter for the latest insights, trends, and updates in the world of education. Join our community today and never miss out on valuable content. Sign up now!”