I've got a wonderful, social, good-natured 4 1/2 year old (birthday in march) who is a very easy child.
Our family has a pretty set schedule of school/social time from 10:15 am-12:30pm. Then we nap from 1-3 every day. Usually she doesn't nap, but plays alone, listens to music and is quiet for that time.
She's started ballet bi-weekly on Friday's with the daughters of a friend. She stays after school and then they do dance sometime before 5pm. My struggle is, if they do the class too late, anytime after 3, she's mentally and emotionally unable to handle class. But there seems to be no worry for them (in spite of repeated reiterations from me) that she needs to do the class before 3pm or else she's not able to handle it. Today she came home with the report that she was unable to focus and actually do ballet. I'm fine with not having her do dance, but she LOVES the social time with the girls (7 & 8 1/2), and also loves doing the ballet if she's not overexhausted before the class. But she can't socialize from 12:30-3ish or later and then still have the energy to focus and learn something new.
Are there other mama's whose older kids still nap? How do I manage my very social but introverted daughter's life so that she gets the rest and quiet time she needs as well as the social life she craves? All my kids- almost 7, almost 5, 3 and 20+ months get quiet time daily and seem to thrive on that as well as sleeping well at night. They're rarely sick, good natured, and able to handle a lot of variety, as long as resting and socialization are kept in a good rhythm.
I know other mom's do this, I'm just the only mom in my area I know who keeps kids napping and resting at these older ages.