Benefits of Boarding - The Gift of Time

Friday, March 18, 2016 - By: Crystal Lenarcic

Every Sunday night my husband and I sit down at the kitchen table with our giant family calendar to plan our week. Like many families, we have the big family calendar with all of the cool stickers with bright colours and cute little images for “sports”, “arts”, “family time”, and my personal favourite, “Mom time” (ha!). 


The calendar is, in theory, a fantastic idea but there is absolutely no way all of the stickers we would require could ever fit into the small space allocated for one day. With two working parents and three young children who are active in multiple sports and arts activities we would need a full calendar page for just one day! So instead, we write in pencil (because guaranteed, changes will be made) in small font and it all looks very drab. 


While I realize that my husband and I choose to schedule our kids in their many activities, and that our busy schedule is of our own making, we are not unlike many other families which choose to expose their children to a range of opportunities. This reigns true as I meet the many families who visit Brentwood and chat with them about their own busy family schedules. With these conversations, I have learned that the Sunday night calendar event that has become an arduous ritual in my home is one that other families experience as well. One of the biggest challenges comes from needing to organize and factor in the driving time to and from activities which, for most parents and children, quickly becomes more of a chore and less of an opportunity to bond. In fact, I’m sure that if we were to add up the hours we spend each week driving to-and-from activities we would be quite unpleasantly surprised.  


The conversation I have families touring Brentwood generally comes back to the benefits of Brentwood and the benefits of the boarding platform on which our programmes are based. I ask families to imagine their children having the opportunity to choose from over 30 arts electives and 20 sports options that take place on one property. I ask them to imagine what their days would look like if they could take the driving time out of their child’s schedule - essentially giving their children the gift of time. Time that each child could use to meet with groups for school projects, find teachers for extra help sessions, participate in service clubs, relax with friends, get in an extra workout, or rehearsal and so much more. 


It certainly isn’t hard for me to imagine because I see it every day as I walk around Brentwood’s beautiful campus which is filled with happy students, engaged and involved in the many different academic, athletic and artistic options that we offer right here on our campus. No driving required.


Crystal Lenarcic



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