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Are our kids doing too much?

It's amazing how different my perspective is as a mom versus my teaching days a few years back! Before I had Kayla, I would have happily preached for hours on the importance of homework and extra murals. Whereas now, I wonder if we are depriving our children of the chance to just PLAY. This week alone, Kayla has had netball, hockey and two sessions of karate, not to mention at least an hour of homework a day - and she is so completely shattered at the end of it all that she can barely crawl off the couch at 7pm to go and brush her teeth.

Now please don't get me wrong - I am not advocating that she stop her extra murals or that homework should be abolished (much as I detest reading homework!) - and Kayla is the one who is keen to get involved in so many after-school activities. But I sometimes wonder whether she should have more free time to draw, paint, play, explore, dream and just "be". Surely that's part of being a child of seven?

Maybe I am overly sensitive because I happen to think that being an adult is overrated at the best of times, and I want her to enjoy the freedom that comes with being a child. Or maybe I am sensing an alarming trend where kids are growing up too soon - and feeling stressed at so young an age because of it.

What do you think?

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