How to Start a Club at Your Kid's School

Find out ways to start a club at your child's school.Find out ways to start a club at your child's school.Did you ever wish your kid's school had more clubs? If your child is interested in a club that does not exist at her school, you can jump-start the club. You'll need to pick something that interests your child and does not overlap with school and community offerings for the same age group. The club could be an alternative to or in addition to seasonal sports teams. As parents, we can have a say in the type of clubs offered at school.

A book club, for example, immerses young readers in the story. Early readers should be reading on their own and with parents for 30 minutes each day. After a long day of school for him and work for you, doing any extra work beyond the reading can be difficult. As parents we're also supposed to help our kids with story recall, by telling us about the story, without prompting them with questions. A school book club gives students and parents a more in-depth way to explore book themes without rushing.

Drum up interest
- Talk to other parents from your child's class or in the same grade. Find out if they would be interested in attending the type of club you want to start. Create a preliminary list of names and contact information. You will want to show how much interest there is in the club when you present the idea to the school's administration.

Find a school sponsor - This is optional, but it may help you get the club started. Talk to your child's teacher or other teachers to find one that might be interested in helping you start the club. Even if the teacher cannot attend every meeting, they can still be involved and help you get the club going.

Cook up a detailed plan - Before you present your idea to your child's school administrator, you'll need to have a solid plan, in writing. Just going to the school administration and telling them you want to start a club is like trying to get a business loan without a business plan.

Provide a proposed schedule - For young readers in grades one through four, meeting weekly and exploring one book per month would be good. The book club could meet for an hour after school or after dinner. In your book club proposal, include a schedule of possible meeting times.

List the books
- Create a list of age-appropriate books. You can consult your child's teacher, the school librarian, or the children's librarian at your local library. Be sure to include a description of the books and why each is a good choice. We can't assume the school administrator has read the books.

Engage Kids with activities - Include a list of related activities, crafts, and food crafts to go accompany each book. This will help you keep the group organized and show the school you've put a lot of thought and effort into creating the club.

Exploring themes and books - For each book the kids could have one to two weeks of reading and discussion, followed by a meeting of crafts and activities. End the month with a movie, if time permits. The movie viewing may have to be moved to the library, or a club member's home.

If you can't start a club at your child's school, consider other options. Check with the children's librarian at the local library for an indoor club. The local recreation department may also have indoor or outdoor spaces which could accommodate your club.

Content by Pam Gaulin.

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