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Back to School – 9 Fantastic Fall Extracurricular Activities

Activities, Back to School
8 min read

September is almost upon us and it’s time to start thinking about what that will look like. Dr. Bonnie Henry announced yesterday that her priority is for in-person learning to continue and for sports, music, and other extracurricular activities to resume, while mask requirements and other health and safety measures remain in place to keep schools safe.

Research by the BC Centre for Disease Control (BCCDC) last year noted a significant impact on students from remote learning, including interrupted learning, increased child stress, decreased connection, increased loneliness, and mental and emotional health effects. Children need to be learning in-person and participating in extracurricular activities is another important necessity.

There are seemingly endless options for after-school activities that your children can get involved in, from soccer to swimming to piano lessons. But what do your children really get out of these activities? Here are some reasons why your kids should participate in extracurricular activities, beyond the standard ‘it looks good on a resume.’ and ‘it’s something to do.’

Extracurricular activities can foster an open mind

Extracurriculars will give your children a chance to explore environments they may not encounter in school or at home. This may expose them to new ideas, interests, and opportunities, which is a great way to encourage their curiosity. 

Help build relationships and connections

After-school activities provide an opportunity for children and teens to spend time in a non-academic environment with people in their age group. This will allow them to build positive relationships in a fun and safe space with others who share a common interest.

Strengthen interpersonal and work skills outside their familiar ‘zones’

Extracurricular activities for children not only allow them to experience new and fun things, but they also help them build important life skills. For example, the relationships they build during these activities will teach them how to work with new people and how to work in a team. We’ve also mentioned time management, self-esteem, and organization as skills fostered in extracurricular activities that will be beneficial to kids in school and later in life.

Teach kids to stay committed

Another important part of extracurricular activities for children and teens is the ability to keep a long-term commitment. If your 12-year-old is on a field hockey, soccer, or rugby team, they will quickly learn that the rest of the team is depending on them to be there for practices and games throughout the season. An activity that requires this type of commitment will provide kids with a great learning experience to be responsible for the activities they have signed up for.

In BC, we’re very priviledged to have a large selection of fantastic orginizations that provide extracurricular activities. Have a look at some of the local businesesses and start a converstation with your child to get them thinking about what new things they would like to try out. All of these organizations are very aware of COVID-19 protocols and do their best to ensure the facilities and teaching environment are safe for your children.

Local Extracurricular Activities

Arts Umbrella
Vancouver, Surrey
Ages 2-22
This fall, Arts Umbrella is excited to offer a host of our tried and true classes, but even more excited about the new programs we’re introducing in our new Granville Island building. Register today. artsumbrella.com/fall

The safety of our students is our number one priority- please read our latest Health & Safety policies found here.

Colourstrings Music & Movement
Vancouver, 778-846-0127
Colourstrings Conservatory of Music offers a complete music education; beginning with Music & Movement classes, fun and engaging activities that enhance the whole child’s development. The preschool children learn do-re-mi solfege with hand-signs & basic music reading with professional, enthusiastic music teachers. Our Choir & Instrumental Lessons for 6yrs onwards develop musicianship & music reading skills further.

Keeping it small for Fall
Covid Protocols & cleaning in place, masks for all kids 6yrs+, limited adult access, teachers wearing masks, social distanced & smaller classes.

Dance Co
Vancouver | Arbutus St & Fraser St
Ages 3 – Adult
Dance Co offers carefully structured dance programs for every level of dancer at both their Arbutus & Fraser studio locations. Discover the joy of dance, in a caring and nurturing learning environment. Register for our fall dance classes online today!

Dance Co’s health & safety plan includes a daily covid-19 health check-in, thorough cleaning and disinfecting measures, superior ventilation with MERV 13 air filters, and physical distancing guidelines. Remote learning options are available for those who are not comfortable attending dance class in the studio.

Back to School - 9 Fantastic Fall Extracurricular Activities - BC Parent Newsmagazine

Lights Up Musical Theatre Schools
Vancouver/North Shore/Burnaby/Richmond/Surrey
Ages 3-18
At Lights Up Schools, we teach the Musical Theatre fundamentals that help students shine on-stage and in all aspects of their lives! Whether your child randomly bursts into song and dance, or is finding their voice, Lights Up is the perfect extra-curricular activity. Lights Up offers weekly Acting, Singing, and Dance classes for 3-18yrs on the weekends, week-long Spring & Summer day camps, and tailored after-school programs.  Are you ready to Shine?

Lights Up follow COVID-19 procedures and guidelines found here.

Back to School - 9 Fantastic Fall Extracurricular Activities - BC Parent Newsmagazine

Long & McQuade Music Lesson Centres
Lower Mainland, Vancouver Island, Prince George, and Kamloops

Why choose Long & McQuade?
Music lessons for all ages, stages, and styles. Professional instructors make learning fun. Convenient lesson times for busy families. No registration fees. Affordable instrument rentals. Contact your local lesson centre to register today.

Long & McQuade follow detailed COVID-19 Safety Measures including a Pre-Screening Tool, Facilitating Personal Hygiene, Physical Distancing, Cleaning and Disinfection Procedures, and Handling of Studio Equipment and Instruments.

Back to School - 9 Fantastic Fall Extracurricular Activities - BC Parent Newsmagazine

Sing, Dance, Play & Learn with Music Together®!
Newborn – 5 years
Our family-style classes are fun, playful, and interactive. The research-based program includes songs, movement, and instrument play, and is loved by families around the world. Sibling discounts!

On top of following all BC Health requirements, Covid safety protocols include additional sanitization, smaller class sizes, and generous makeup options.

Back to School - 9 Fantastic Fall Extracurricular Activities - BC Parent Newsmagazine

Place des Arts
Place des Arts is an arts educations centre located in Coquitlam. We offer quality instruction, both online and in-person, for all ages and skill levels in dance, music, theatre, visual and literary arts. Take part in the arts!

Check here for our safety info: https://placedesarts.ca/covid-19-restart-plan/

Back to School - 9 Fantastic Fall Extracurricular Activities - BC Parent Newsmagazine

Tom Lee Music Academy
Lower Mainland
At Tom Lee Music Academy, you can enjoy excellent music education in a fun community atmosphere. Students of all ages come together for a positive music-making experience at Richmond, Coquitlam, North Vancouver, and Victoria locations. To register, please call 604.273.6661.

Tom Lee’s priorities will be the personal health and safety of all students, families, teachers, and staff by ensuring school cleanliness, social distancing, and required face masks and regular hand-washing.

TumbleTown Movement Education Centre
Vancouver (Kitsilano) & Richmond (Steveston & Ironwood), 604/357-7355
Ages 6 months & Up
TumbleTown Movement Education Centre offers specialized movement programs for children from 6 months & up. Our programs introduce children to fun and challenging activities through movement circuits, games and music. Our programs are designed to provide children with the fundamental skills necessary to keep them active for life!  We offer beginner to advanced programs including weekly classes, family drop-in, private & group bookings & more.  Registration is always ongoing!

Covid protocols – https://tumbletown.ca/covid-19-update/

Back to School - 9 Fantastic Fall Extracurricular Activities - BC Parent Newsmagazine

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