How much do you spend on enrichment classes? Or, do you take the stand of not sending them to any class at all, leaving them in the good hands of childcare or primary school teachers?
It’s common to see kids with packed schedules. But truth is, not every family can afford to spend equally on each child.
We checked in with parents in Singapore to find out what types of enrichment classes their kids go to. Most importantly, are we spending too much on that?
Popular enrichment classes children in Singapore attend
For kindergarten kids, parents shared that their kids attend ballet, swimming, Chinese enrichment, piano, art, phonics class, and taekwondo.
For Chinese class, Berries and Edugrove are where their kids learn Chinese through fun ways, apart from these helpful Chinese educational apps!
For primary school kids, the additional classes are understandably around academics.
Madam Chow, mum of 2 shares that her P3 child attends Chinese and Math tuition, and goes for gymnastic classes. Her K2 daughter is learning ballet and swimming.
Likewise for mum CD who has a son in P5 and a daughter in K2. The classes they attend are similar to Madam Chow’s. For her P5 kid, he attends Chinese, Taekwondo and Er Hu lessons. For her younger child, she goes for Chinese, piano, art and swimming classes.
Mum of 3, Madam Alicia, shares that her primary schoolers are enrolled in taekwondo, swimming, piano and ballet classes.
Music, instruments-related or dance classes seem to be a top choices among parents with young children.
This sentiment is also shared by Madam Tong who has 2 daughters. Piano and hip-hop classes, along with Math Olympiad training for her P5 daughter; Yamaha Junior Course for her younger girl who turns 4 this year.
With 1 child in primary school, another in kindergarten and another toddler, Mdm Lim sends her 2 elder kids to phonics classes, swimming and roller skating.
How much do parents spend on children’s enrichment classes?
There’s no doubt about the living standards in Singapore – where projected costs to raise a child here can go up to $1 million. This, of course, greatly depends on what parents are spending on.
Amidst increasing preschool fees, parents face the stress with inflation and volatile job security. At the same time, we feel the pressure about providing enough or even more. Every parent wants the best for their children, right?
Let’s take a look at the fees for each enrichment class per child on a monthly basis:
- Primary school Maths tuition: $300
- Kids swimming lessons: between $70 – $200
- Children’s ballet classes: $110 – $200
- Children’s Chinese enrichment: $700 per term (abt 11-12 lessons); approx. $240 per month
- Kids’ piano lessons: $120 – $285
- Children’s roller skate classes: $100
- Taekwondo for kids: $50
- Hip hop for kids: $90
- Math Olympiad classes: $1,200 for 24 lessons; approx. $200 per month
- Children’s public speaking classes: $6,000 for 96 lessons + 24 less FOC (shared between twin kids; approx. $200 per month
- Yamaha Junior Course: $480 per term; approx. $175 per month
- English phonics classes: $588 per term; approx. $215 per month
Do parents think that they spend too much on enrichment for their kids?
Most of them feel that they are not spending too much.
Madam Lim shares, “No, because they enjoy it. Will not squeeze classes into their weekend. One class per weekday only.”
For Madam Tong, she feels that the classes are “worth it” as they help to nurture “good skills’. “The classes help in overall development,” she adds.
“No, children need to explore their interests. Good to expose them now,” explains Madam Alicia who has 3 kids.
Mrs Teo probably spoke most parents’ minds, “Abit, but then to take him away from TV screen, it’s worth it.”
It’s undeniable there are plenty of positives with the additional exposure and learning opportunities for children. Kids who are attending interest-centric classes get to de-stress through fun and engaging classes, and perhaps give their eyes a break to fight childhood myopia.
Paying for the monthly or termly fees doesn’t end there. Parents need to also consider the resources i.e. time and money spent on transport to send and pick them to classes, as well as the effort needed to go through additional homework assigned or practice that they need to do.
How do you know if you’re overspending on your children?
1 way to know is to find out if you have a comfortable retirement plan drawn up. If you are struggling with retirement preparedness, this could mean that it could be a challenge during your golden years.
It is important to spend within your means. Enrichment classes are nice to have but are not mandatory. Avoid unhealthy comparisons; take positive action if you wish to be more financially independent and to be able to provide more for your family.