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How Extracurriculars Make You a Better Student


A girl plays violin in the school orchestra.

You may be tempted to focus solely on grades, but studies have shown the benefits of participating in after-school activities. Extracurriculars can improve your grades, enhance future career opportunities, and boost self-confidence. 


According to numerous studies reviewed by the Kappa Omicron Nu Honor Society, “Students who participated in school-based extracurricular activities had higher grades, higher academic aspirations, and better academic attitudes than those who were not involved in extracurricular activities at all.”


In short, if better grades are your goal, extracurriculars should be on your schedule. Keep reading for all the details on how after-school activities increase your success as a student.


Boost Your Grades With Extracurriculars

Participation in extracurriculars is directly tied to increased academic performance. Students in extracurricular activities were three times as likely to perform in the top 25% in math and reading. The reason is simple: student clubs, sports, and volunteering reinforce academic lessons and help you apply skills learned in the classroom to real world settings. 


For example, there’s a link between musical and mathematical abilities. In its most basic form, music is all about math. As students explore time signatures and dividing whole notes into halves, quarters, eighths, and sixteenths, they’re learning about counting, fractions, and patterns. 


Elevate Your College Application

Universities, especially Ivy League schools, are looking for more than a 4.0 GPA. They want well-rounded students, who can get high grades and participate in extracurricular activities like sports, debate, and community service. 


However, top colleges and universities aren’t looking for the student who dabbles in many different hobbies. They’re looking for students who are deeply committed to one extracurricular activity. According to Crimson Education, “[Ivy League schools] prefer you dig deep into a subject, dedicate significant time to it, and use this experience to help the school propel you into a world-changing career.”


If you want to get into a top school, add one or two extracurriculars you’re passionate about into your schedule. 


Learn Career Skills In After School Activities

Extracurriculars don’t just set you up for success in school; they set you up for success in life. How depends on which extracurricular activity you commit to. 


Many of our LeadYouth learners participate in speech and debate teams. Debate teaches public speaking, how to form persuasive arguments, and how to think on the fly. All of these life skills will come in handy when asking your future boss for a raise. 


IThe right extracurricular will prepare you for life as a leader. Becoming the team captain of your school’s tennis team or coordinating volunteer projects can help you develop leadership skills that will translate to future jobs.


Build Confidence

Extracurriculars help you feel fulfilled and better about yourself. According to a study conducted by Blomfield and Barber, “participation in any type of extracurricular activity was associated with a higher social and academic self-concept, and general self-worth.”


Confident students are more likely to conquer challenges and be more resilient in the face of any obstacles in their way. The more you believe in yourself the better you’ll perform in school, both academically and socially. 


Are you looking for an extracurricular activity where you build confidence, improve your public speaking, and learn leadership skills? Explore LeadYouth’s online program.  


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