When writing about cooking with kids I found myself thinking of the skills past generations were expected to learn from their parents, many skills that we don’t necessarily pass on to our own kids. Although I’m not what you would call a homemaker, there are still some skills I feel I should be teaching my own kids so I have found a few tutorials to help..
Life Skill 1: Thread a Needle
Whether they’re sewing on a button or working on a summer craft idea, being able to thread a needle is a great skill and one that takes practice (and better eye sight). I remember an elementary school play day when one of the events was threading a needle. What often takes me twenty tries, my son can do in two.
Life Skill 2: Sew on a Button
There’s a reason new shirts come with extra buttons sewn the inside or attached in a bag. Buttons always come loose and eventually pop off. Being able to sew on a button by hand is an easy sewing skill that can save a perfectly good shirt from sitting in a pile for donation.
Socks are another item that always wear out before you grow out of them. It always seems to occur either on the seem at the tip of the toe (easy enough to fix) or the ball or heel of the sock (a little harder to fix). Being able to repair a sock will keep the damaged socks out of the dust bin and in your child’s sock drawer.
Life Skill 4: Make a Basic Omelette
We shared some tips on how to cook various eggs, another great skill to teach the kids, but an omelette turns an ordinary egg into a meal for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. The skill is easy enough to learn along with teaching basic kitchen and stove safety. It can be a simple omelette of grated cheese or the kids can great creative with their own fixings. Worst case, if the omelette doesn’t work the first time it makes a tasty scrambled egg dish.
Your kids may roll their eyes at the suggestion of writing a letter by hand with their easy access to technology. We worked on a letter writing project during the summer holidays for that very reason. Even if your kids never develop pen pals, knowing how to address an envelop correctly will always come in handy. Don’t assume your kids know this skill either.
Life Skill 6: Cut with a Knife
Getting the kids involved with meal preparation and cooking is a great way for them to understand and appreciate the food we consume. Washing and cutting fruit and vegetables is one way to get the kids involved but make sure they know how to use a knife.
Life Skill 7: Clean a Cut
Scrapes and cuts go hand-in-hand with being a kid. As parents we tend to the bumps and bruises with Band-Aids and kisses. You may love the role of caregiver and healer but teaching our kids how to tend to their simple wounds is an important skill to learn.
Life Skill 8: Iron a shirt
Celebrate the fact that your kids are getting older, this means they can take over some of those tasks you don’t relish like ironing. Whether your child wears a school uniform or not, preparing his or her clothes to look their best is a great skill and knowing how to iron will help.
Life Skill 9: Tying a Tie
My son has developed an interest in wearing a tie and I’m not a fan of faking it, no clip-ons in our home. It always seems like a difficult task, one men and boys can’t master on their own, but it is easier than you or your child may think.
Learning these skills will not only build your child’s self confidence, it will add to their independence. Sometimes it can be scary to see our kids relying on us less and less but part of our job as a parent is to prepare our kids for adulthood. Teaching them skills they can use now and for the rest of their life is one way we can help.
What other skills do you think kids can learn now that they will need later in life?