Dear Next President,
Imagine running from one activity to the next and having some work to do on top of that every single day. I’m sure that many people have experienced this, but probably as somebody in college or as an adult. Now, imagine experiencing this when you’re in middle school or high school. Most kids now are over scheduled now and this is a big problem. Kids should have time to relax and have fun. Parents need to be educated about how kids need to have a balanced lifestyle with their activities and school work.
When students are overscheduled it causes them to be stressed which can cause mental and physical problems. Many students are experience problems with their bodies due to stress. Not only is stress causing the problems, but over scheduling with sports is too. With all the effort you put into your activities, you tire out your body which makes you feel more sick and sore then you really should be. The Mayo Clinic says that “Stress causes high blood pressure, heart diseases, obesity and diabetes” (Stress Management, 1). The things that happen to your body are extremely important and you need to take care of it. Parents need to be educated about these kinds of things because if they don’t know then it can be very harmful for their children.
With over scheduled students, downtime and family time is lost which causes behavioral differences in their lifestyle. I’ve even noticed in myself that when I am stressed, mostly with my over scheduled life, my behavior is less than acceptable. I get angry at the little things my sisters do and at the amount of homework I get each day. This causes my relationships with the people I care about to become fragile I don’t want that. The Mayo Clinic found that “Stress causes behavioral problems like angry outbursts, drug or alcohol abuse, social withdrawal,” (Stress Management, 1). With over scheduled students it’s hard to get a break for them, but also it’s necessary. As said in this research, when kids don’t get breaks in their lives, their behavior gets worse and worse which cause their relationships to break. Parents need to be aware of this because this could have an impact on what their relationships look like with their child.
Now you may ask yourself, “What is to be done about this problem?” and really, it’s just awareness. The biggest thing you can do for students as a whole group, is make their parents understand what they’re going through as a teen with thousands of hours of work each night. For students with over schedules lives, they need to cut back on their activities and the amount of work they do for school. Their either needs to be a cut back in the work for students or a limit to an amount of activities they can do per season and what those activities entail. The biggest this though is that parents just need to be aware of what kids are going through these days and they need to be sensitive around how their child is acting because it could cause major issues in their lives.