15 Afterschool Program Ideas for All Elementary Ages and Abilities
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15 Afterschool Program Ideas for All Elementary Ages and Abilities

Afterschool programs are an excellent way to help your children develop, regardless of age or ability. Depending on the program, these activities can help your children grow in various areas by discussing and developing their interests, hobbies, talents, and skills. Unlike "boring" school activities, these programs are enjoyable for children. The more children enjoy these activities, the more parents and teachers are willing to share them.

Choosing the right program ideas is critical for helping children develop mentally and socially. To help you make the best decision, we've compiled a list of afterschool program ideas for elementary ages and for all abilities that are both educational and beneficial. Let's get into it!


What Exactly are After School Programs for Elementary Ages?

Afterschool programs are safe, structured activities that allow children to meet regularly after school to learn new skills and grow into responsible adults. These are not necessarily areas covered in the school curriculum. They cover a wide range of topics, such as reading, painting, arts, cultural enrichment, nutrition, sports and recreation, conflict resolution, and other programs!

Afterschool programs of high quality are usually community-driven, extended learning opportunities that promote developmentally appropriate cognitive, social, physical, and emotional outcomes. These programs supplement and balance the academic curriculum. Afterschool programs can take place immediately after school, in the evenings, on weekends, and during summer vacations and holidays.

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Best After School Program Ideas for Elementary Ages and Abilities

Several types of afterschool program ideas and activities could be added to kids' activities to make the hours between school and dinner time more interesting. Arts and crafts, writing and theater, cooking and food activities, game time, and outdoor fun are all included. These are our top picks!

Arts & Crafts

  1. Painting

In this activity, kids use various painting objects such as fabrics, a paint-board, and whatever paint they have on hand to create as many different designs and effects as possible. The more they do it, the more creative they will become.

  1. Chalk art

Chalk art is one of kids' best outdoor arts and crafts projects. To make some "masterpieces," all you need is a piece of sidewalk and a bucket of chalk!

  1. Rainbow soap foam

Another activity preschool to elementary school students could do after school is making rainbow soap foam. To create this tactile activity, you only need a little soap, water, a mixer, and some food coloring. However, you must keep an eye on them to ensure that they do not accidentally get soap in their eyes!

  1. Homemade kites

Your children can get creative with fabric, string, popsicle sticks, and other materials you have lying around the house. This is also an excellent way to teach children the art of sewing.

Writing and Theater

  1. Letter writing

When you include colors and have your child's friend or siblings present, the art of letter writing can also be fun for them. You can teach your children to write colorful and creative letters using a pen and some colorful books.

  1. Puppet show

With this activity, you can assist your children in putting together a simple puppet show out of paper bags or socks. You'll be astounded by the characters your children can conjure up.

  1. Dress Up

Almost every child enjoys a good dress-up game; it enhances their imaginative abilities and encourages them to learn how to create basic story structures. Give them a theme and some costumes, and they should be fine.

  1. Storytelling

Creating and presenting tales and short stories works exceptionally well for younger and elementary-aged children. Encourage them to include as much detail as possible and perhaps even create a picture to accompany it as the story starter. This is an excellent afterschool program idea for elementary ages!

  1. Movie making

Older children comfortable with phones and tablets can make their own movies. Making a movie is great for kids aged 10 and up because it improves their critical thinking skills as well as their computer and phone usage. So, you may need an older sibling to help with this, but it is a fun option!


Cooking and Food Activities

  1. Baking

Baking with your child can be as entertaining and educational as any other program! Children enjoy having to do adult things, and this can help you spend more time with your child while keeping them engaged.

  1. Ice Cream Bag

Children love sweet foods; they love making them more. Using ice cubes, half and half, sugar, and your favorite flavorings, you can make ice cream straight from the bag while making the process as relaxing as possible.


Game Time

  1. Hide and Seek

With this game activity, your kids' critical thinking, gross motor, self-reliance and social skills are developed. This game is easy to understand for all kids of all ages and abilities and is quite simple to play.

  1. Who am I?

This is a guessing game for kids in which they must answer yes or no questions to determine the identity of a famous person or animal. It is a good way to enjoy the afterschool hours.

Outdoor Fun

  1. Nature walks

Walking outside can be enjoyable for children, and it does not have to feel like an uphill trek (even if that is precisely what you are doing). This afterschool program idea for elementary ages can be fun to do with teachers or parents!

  1. Obstacle courses

Kids love challenging playtime. These games require a lot of physical movement that can encourage and improve their thinking and problem-solving skills while bringing fun for them.


Are After School Programs for Elementary Students Required?

Afterschool programs are critical to the overall development of children, particularly those in elementary school who are about to enter adulthood and promote positive outcomes among them as youth. Without some of these structured, supervised activities in the afterschool hours, some kids are more likely to be unnecessarily idle.

Final Thoughts

Afterschool program ideas for elementary ages offer elementary-aged children opportunities to learn new skills that ahs a variety of benefits! In general, the skills learned in afterschool programs can be extremely beneficial in a variety of ways, including promoting physical health and avoiding other risky behavior. This is why it is critical to provide them with high-quality afterschool programs.

Before You Go

While you’re here, make sure you check out our explore page so that you can find afterschool program ideas for elementary ages in your area!

Looking for more ideas? Check these out!