By Henry Moore
ECAs are an important part of any student’s school life. With the large variety of ECAs offered at BIS, including various creative clubs, team sports, and more, there is a good chance that there is at least one that suits each student. These ECAs provide students with a chance to explore their interests in a setting different from their everyday classroom environment. There are many benefits that ECAs can provide, including encouraging socialization amongst students and physical fitness.
Firstly, there is an obvious opportunity for students to develop and/or find new interests through ECAs. These either newfound or long-lasting interests can help a student pursue what peaks their interest in a more personalized setting, alongside the structured school experience. A student’s sense of commitment and perseverance can also be developed through this exploration of new or previously existing interests. A person with a passion for running, for instance, might join the school track team or the cross country team and find that they can increase not only their own individual health but the success of their team through their contribution. They may develop lifelong interests and hobbies as a result, which can help increase their confidence.
Secondly, participating in an ECA without a doubt leaves a positive impact on students’ health and fitness. For example, in a country like Kyrgyzstan where there are many environmental factors at play such as air pollution, it is more important than ever to promote indoor active ECAs, in the winter months especially. There are many options for students at BIS to work towards improving their physical fitness. For example, rock climbing, dance lessons, fencing, outdoor games, and more are all offered at BIS. The diversity of the available options will help cater to most students in our community. These options as well as others can help promote focus while reducing stress, which in turn can contribute to improved health and academic success.
Last but not least, after-school activities promote interaction with others and the growth of social abilities. Students can interact with their classmates in a setting other than the classroom by joining clubs and organizations. For many, it is a struggle to create connections with classmates or just communicating in general. This is another reason why ECAs are so important: students can learn communication skills by interacting with other kids.
In conclusion, while physical activity after school is not only a place for students to promote and potentially lead a more well-balanced, healthy lifestyle, it can also be a place for them to find new interests, enhance bonds with classmates, and learn new skills. ECA signups are closed for the year here at BIS (since it’s the 4th term already), but you should definitely consider it in term 1 of the following year!