School clubs offer opportunities for kids to share interests, build academic skills and socialize -- all important activities for tweens. And they aren't limited to books, chess and debate anymore. Many clubs are mini-adventures in entrepreneurship, moving kids from concept to design, construction, and deployment of real products, such as a robotic arm that extends reach, or handmade blankets for homeless shelters.
If your child has an interest that isn't represented in an existing school club, talk to administrators about starting a new club. Often, you only need a few like-minded students and a teacher to sponsor it.