I used to be one of those moms who did everything for their kids.
I always felt that it was just easier and much faster if I did things. If the kids’ rooms were messy, I’d be the one to clean them because it was just faster. If they wanted to help make lunch, I’d say “Not today. I’m just going to do it really quick.” because I didn’t want to deal with the mess. If the kids were arguing, I’d step in right away and deal with the situation.
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Over time though, I’ve learned that I was doing my kids a huge disservice by doing everything myself. Children deserve the opportunity to learn these essential life skills so that they can grow up to become successful, well-adjusted adults.
A survey that was done throughout the United States last year showed that 1/3 of all young adults cannot cook a basic meal or even boil an egg and over 42% do not feel capable of doing a load of laundry, folding it and putting it away. No wonder kids are living at home longer than they used to. They don’t feel capable of taking care of themselves.
Our goal, as parents, is to raise our children to be self-sufficient adults who don’t need us to do things for them anymore (crying face).
As much as I hate to admit it, my kids are getting older and it’s time that they start learning these essential life skills.
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How To Do A Load Of Laundry
It’s never too young to start helping out with the laundry. Little ones can start by helping you sort colors, load the washer and the dryer and match pairs of socks. Older kids can add soap, fold and learn about the machine settings while teens should be able to do loads all by themselves.
How to Plan And Cook A Basic Meal
Learning how to plan and cook a basic meal is such an important skill for all children to learn. Little ones can start by helping you pour pre-measured ingredients when cooking and baking as well as adding toppings to foods like pizzas and cookies. Once they feel comfortable, they can move on to making easy things like sandwiches and snacks. As they get older, kitchen safety is something that should be covered as well as how to plan a meal, write a grocery list and cooking a basic dish.
How To Do Basic Household Chores
Chores are not just for older kids. Even toddlers can start getting into the habit of helping out around the house. Start off easy with things such as picking up toys when they’re done, dusting and sorting socks. As they get older, they can clean their room, make their bed, set the table, unload the dishwasher and sweep.
For a full list of age-appropriate chores and a printable chore chart, click the link below.
How To Take Care Of Their Personal Hygiene
Taking care of your personal hygiene is an important skill for everyone to learn, and it’s best if it’s started at a young age. When they’re little, talk to them about how and why it’s a good idea to keep themselves neat and clean. Brushing their teeth twice a day, washing their face, bathing, washing their hands after using the bathroom and before and after eating are all great habits to get your children into. As they get older, you should talk to them about using deodorant and feminine hygiene products (if applicable of course).
Healthy Eating Habits
Teach your kids to eat healthy when they’re young and they’ll most likely be healthy eaters for life. Prepare healthy meals that they will enjoy and talk about how certain foods affect your mind and body. Stock your fridge and pantry with healthy snack options that they can choose from. Teach them that treats are ok in moderation and but they’re best to be saved for special occasions.
How To Socialize With Strangers
How many times have you heard the phrase ‘Stranger Danger’? As parents, we always teach our kids not to talk to strangers but communicating with people who we are not familiar with is an essential skill that people of all ages should be comfortable with. You can do this by having them order their own food at a restaurant, talking to the cashiers at the grocery store, how to look people in the eye when speaking to them, how to be polite, how to say hello when someone says hi, how to show respect to others and how to listen when people are talking to them.
How To Manage Their Money
How to manage one’s money is an essential life skill that’s best learned when young. When you feel as though your child is ready, you can start by giving them a small allowance and opening up a bank account for them. Explain how money works and that everything has a cost. Each time they receive an allowance, have them save a portion and then allow them to spend a portion if they wish. This way they can save up for something that they really want and they’ll have fun watching their money grow.
How To Resolve Disagreements Amicably
While it may feel natural to jump in and solve your children’s’ disagreements, don’t unless things get out of hand. Disagreements between siblings or even friends are a natural part of growing up. Explain to them the how to have good communication skills and teach them the importance of listening and understanding another person’s perspective. Have them talk out their feelings and work through their problems amicably. This will serve them later on in life.
How To Serve Others
Teaching your children to serve others starts with you. Lead by example and they will be more inclined to do so themselves throughout their lives. Volunteering and donating old toys, books, and clothes together is a great way to get the entire family involved in helping those in need.
How To Have Good Time Management Skills
Having good time management skills is something that every person will need in their lifetime. Whether it be for school, a job or just life in general, learning how to be productive, staying on task and keeping organized are essential skills that will help later on in life. Teach your children how to organize their time by using a planner and assigning them deadlines for tasks around the house, such as chores, homeschool work or homework. Help them prioritize those tasks by importance and teach them to develop a routine to better manage their time.
What are some things that you guys would add? Comment down below.