Pros and cons of participating in extracurriculars

By Fatima Mohamud and Sumaya Noor

Image taken from in-the-college-admissions-process

What are extracurriculars?

Extracurriculars are activities outside of school that middle, high, and college students engage in for fun or academic reasons. There is a plentiful range of clubs and activities you can participate in such as: culture, music, math, science and robotics, sports, and media. These allow students to connect and entertain themselves while building new bonds, friendships, skills, and supporting the school community.

Why should you join an extracurricular?

Extracurricular activities and clubs are a great way to make new friends, explore your hobbies, and have new things to do. Many people have made lots of new relationships, acquaintances, and lifelong friends. Others learned new sports, favorite medias (books, TV, etc.), and new hobbies to share. It’s a great way to expand your social circle and begin a new chapter of your life.

How do extracurriculars benefit college and beyond?

When applying for college there’s a big list of what to go over and many things to include in order to look presentable. Certain extracurriculars can look nice on resumes and leave a good impression on employers. For other people it could be jobs or outside clubs. When writing your admission paper you’d want to include a sports team you might’ve been on, a photo of your club, or maybe even something you’ve made like a story. It’s important to indulge yourself in something you might want to spend time on and enjoy.

How can extracurriculars change your life?

After college, you’ve got to have some type of future, and many found theirs in school clubs. Activities like these may seem unimportant but these could give you the right ideas and the push you needed into getting a job and becoming your dream self. Clubs such as volunteering could make you seem dedicated, caring and reliable, others like art will have people view you as creative. It all matters on who you are and what you want to create or do with your life.

They’re also very significant to school life too, many people found skills, like finding motivation, they thought were not needed but found themselves reaching the spots that were missing.

Cons and disadvantages of extracurricular activities?

Though there are pros to extracurriculars, there are also cons. One of the disadvantages is that they may become stressful and add onto the current school workload. This can cause students to struggle balancing both their extracurriculars and regular classes.

Another disadvantage is that they can take away free or family time from students. Extracurriculars usually are an hour or two long, and adding that after school means students would only have so much time before having to go to bed.

Too many extracurriculars or physical activities can wear out students and cause them to be fatigued or lethargic during classes, meaning less focus and that could lead to worse performance

Another issue could be that students may feel unmotivated because they cannot perform well in their extracurriculars. The opposite could also become an issue to kids, where a student may stray away from their academics and focus too much on their extracurriculars. Either way is harmful to a student’s success and kids should always consider both the pros and cons of performing in after school activities.

How to decide if extracurriculars are for you?

Balancing the pros and cons of participating in extracurriculars is important. Students should always consider the effects of participation, both in the now and in the long term.

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Drug and nicotine use among teens

By: Olivia Miller

Drug use among teens has been a growing issue for decades. It’s no secret that teenagers now more than ever, have easy access to these dangerous substances. From the years 2000-2017 the number of teenagers who overdosed on drugs nearly quadrupled. In 2019 almost 5000 teens died from a reported drug overdose, and surprisingly opioids make up for about 4/5ths of those deaths.

Cannabis is the most commonly used drug among teens. Even though there aren’t any reports of overdoses due to marijuana, there are serious side effects and long term damage that can occur from regular use. According to the CDC, (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) “[T]he teen brain is actively developing and often will not be fully developed until the mid 20s”. Marijuana use during this period may harm the developing teen brain. Some effects from continuous marijuana use during adolescence include: “difficulty thinking and problem solving, problems with memory and learning, impaired coordination, and difficulty maintaining attention”. Also, teens who smoke marijuana on a regular basis can have an increased risk of mental health issues.

Although marijuana is the most commonly used drug among teens, there is a new and increasingly popular issue among adolescents. Nicotine. Cigarette use has declined by 73% from 1990-2017. Although these numbers are exciting and something to celebrate, nicotine has taken a new form in E-cigarettes. The act commonly known as vaping has become very popular among teens. The CDC reports that a shocking 21% of high schoolers vape. What makes vaping so dangerous is that it has not been around long enough for doctors and experts to know the long term effects. It is also more difficult to identify exactly what chemicals you’re putting into your body when you vape. Even though you have to be 18 or even 21 in some states to purchase an E-cigarette, young teens still find a way to acquire them. This makes vaping even more dangerous because people who sell to teens can lace the devices with other very harmful drugs and they wouldn’t even know it.

Although vaping statistics have declined in the past few years, nicotine still finds ways to affect our youth in one way or another. As far as drugs, there’s something new every year and no matter what, teens always are eager to hop on the trend, no matter how dangerous. That is why teens need to be careful and watch what they put into their body’s because it can be more harmful than you think.

Sports schedule for: 10/18-10/22

5:30pm4:30pm / 8:45pmJV Football vs. North St. PaulPolar Field
5:30pm / 7:00pm4:30pm / 8:30pmJV/Varsity Volleyball vs. Como Parkat Como Park High School
4:00pm Boys / Girls Cross Country Conference ChampionshipHOME
5:30pm / 5:30pm 7:00pm C-Squad / JV / Varsity Volleyball vs. CentralHOME
7:00pm5:00pm / 8:45pmFootball vs. St. Croix Lutheranat St. Croix Lutheran