Parenting is the biggest undertaking you will ever embark upon. Being a parent involves shaping the mind of a developing person, teaching that young individual what is right and what is wrong. The world requires many skills, and which skills you teach your children will shape their lives. Discover four must-know skills to teach to your kids.
1. Keep a Checkbook
Image via Flickr by jridgewayphotography
Performing basic finances is an important part of being an adult, and yet little time is spent teaching kids how to manage finances. In an age of smartphone apps allowing you to check your bank balance, the basic skill of keeping a checkbook is often neglected. This neglect, however, leaves people vulnerable to miscalculations caused by items posting late.
Start a bank account for your children and walk them through the basics of recording their expenses and credits. Then start putting their allowance into their account and let them keep their own books. Double-check their work from time to time and offer constructive feedback.
2. Do Basic Home Maintenance
Keeping a clean and functional house is vital to enjoying your life. After all, you’ll probably be spending more time in your home than anywhere else.
Beyond teaching your children to clean up after themselves, you can also teach them to do maintenance tasks, such as changing air filters, touching up the paint, and cleaning your home’s gutters. At the same time, be sure to teach them to know their limits. With complex systems like your home’s HVAC system, be sure to teach them when to get the experts involved.
3. Mend Clothes
Another simple skill often overlooked in a more disposable age is mending clothing. A modern adult with a torn pair of pants or coat is more likely to toss the article of clothing than to get out the needle and thread.
Mending clothes, while not the most glamorous of pastimes, helps stretch the family budget by reducing the monthly clothing outlay. Teach your kids to sew, at least as far as performing basic repairs. You can give them their own sewing kits to give them a pride of ownership. Although sewing is often considered a feminine skill, sewing rips in a winter jacket is something that either gender can benefit from learning.
4. Give Back to the Community
Charity is an important part of living a fulfilling life. Like with many other good habits, starting early is an effective way to be sure the habit sticks. Take your kids to a local soup kitchen or to help out at an animal shelter.
Try to match the charitable action to your children’s interests. A child who enjoys reading can volunteer at the local library, while a kid interested in medicine can do charity work at a hospital or retirement home. Of course, your local church may have some volunteer opportunities for children.
Although parenting is a huge responsibility, the rewards are equally huge. Shaping a life means one day seeing that life grow into adulthood and responsibility. Be sure to prepare your kids for life in the best ways you can, and you can make sure they are happy, healthy, and wise.
Guest post written by Ashley. Ashley is a full time college student wr