The importance of co-curricular activities in a student's life should be obvious. The very experience of being a student remains incomplete with her/his experience of participation in these activities. Almost all the educational institutions offer this facility. It includes English club, debating club, acting, recitation, dance, singing, music, drawing etc. Besides, there are a large number of institutions which are set-up only to serve this purpose, i.e., to provide students with the platform of learning to perform, to do something, to stand on their own, to evaluate the hidden qualities of them. But some parents find it unnecessary or time-killing and do not allow their offsprings to participate in these activities thinking that these would rob their children of the valuable time which they might invest in their institutional studies.
Some guardians do not approve of these activities on the ground that most of them are declared non-Islamic in the Holy Quran and Hadith. Or, they will demand girls to remove from their usual ritual purdah which is so crucial! As a result, many a genius students are deprived of the opportunity to participate in the co-curricular fields and with the passage of time their genius blurs.
But if we think deeply about the benefit extra-curricular activities, we will be largely on its side. For example, debating sharpens a student's capacity for thinking and enriches her/his intellect since she has to study a lot to make the speech. Besides, she becomes witty and confident, ready to counter any argument so that they become extrovert which is quiet essential for achieving success. Recitation clarifies one's voice, corrects pronunciation, gives the gift of presentation, makes the performer capable of eye-contact with the audience which makes them sociable and confident.
If students participates in these activities, they need not hamper their studies. All they have to do is keep a balance but the seed has to be sown from the very early days.
Kids in the kindergarten must be inspired to take part so that when they will grow up intelligently and socially sound and confident. It is a platform which helps students to develop their personality, shape their character and make them stronger to survive.
Besides, when one grows up and enters career, those experiences become a boon for them. When you submit your CV anywhere with a good description of your co-curricular experience, you are apt to be preferred with the one without it and finally it gives dimension to your thoughts, makes you versatile and you become more and more innovative in your imagination. In no ways it is a hindrance to the process of a sound study or to academic success. On the contrary, it's a gift. Of course, there are matters to be considered, such as, the expenses they may demand, but not all the activities are expensive. Besides, your day of exam may coincide with your day of performance. In such case, you must prefer your exam since you will get many more occasions to perform which may make-up for the missed one.
At last the crucial matter of time. Co-curricular activities demand time. Surely, it will. But what it gives you in return is no less valuable and lasts life-long. For example, I was interested in dance in my early schooldays, I requested my father to allow me to join a dance-school but he denied me on the ground that no decent girl should make such a demand. Then my mother urged me to concentrate on my study and encouraged my writing rhymes. School magazines encouraged me to publish my writing first. Though I wrote rhymes but never showed them to anyone due to my shyness. But each year school magazine and wall magazine demanded me to write and I wrote. In college, I was one of the six literary editors for the college magazine. And now, I write, though my writing is already criticized for its openness and being too much critical, I take these compliments as plus points and go ahead. Moreover, no member of my family ever reads an article written by me, nor anyone but my mother inspires me to write even but I go on, on and on. So may be your interests in co-curricular activity will not be inspired by your near and dear ones, but you should hold on. Because, in the long run it will do nothing but good to you.