Furthermore, they are essential in college applications and when applying for a student. However, in the shadows of Covid-19 and the amputated academic life of 2020, participating in extracurricular activities seems even more important for the individual student.
Shutting down extracurricular activities or after-school activities during the pandemic and the sub-sequential lock-downs has an extended impact on the social lives and mental-wellbeing of students who are isolated from their friends and hobbies. Instead of shutting down, the activities should be implemented into an online version so students can continue their after-school activities no matter what the pandemic may bring.
Why not invite students to participate in Art classes, literature classes, courses on innovation and entrepreneurship, in discussion clubs, or even chess clubs? Everything is possible in an online setting as long as the platform supports and facilitates social interaction and a sense of community.
Argentinian El Caballito de Palermo, a multidisciplinary civil society organization in Buenos Aires, dedicated to supporting the development of children’s cognitive and emotional competencies based on the game of chess successfully held classes where ten teachers and 50+ partners taught 1,000 students chess over one year. After searching for a solution to bring the chess club online, they found out that CanopyLAB has successfully helped bring many schools and universities online, both their official programs but certainly also extracurricular or after-school activities. After entering a partnership, El Caballito de Palermo has increased their reach and can train many teachers through digital chess classes.
Giving students the opportunity to participate in extracurricular activities online will not only give them a chance to earn extracurricular points, it will also support them in their growth as individuals and help them engage with fellow students in a time where social distancing is predominant.
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