Parents, we know that having your kids home more often than usual due to the COVID-19 pandemic can be challenging at times. Once online homework is finished, it’s not always easy to find something productive and enjoyable for children to do.
One great way to make the most of any extra free time is to teach your kids life skills they might not learn in school. In this article, we’ve rounded up six of the best skills you can teach your children from home, as well as resources to help you get started.
Show your children how to make their favorite meals and let them help out in ways that suit their age and abilities. This not only teaches children how to cook—a skill that will benefit them for the rest of their lives—but can be a meaningful family bonding activity.
2. Home Maintenance
Have any projects around the house that you’ve been meaning to start on—maybe painting a wall or organizing a room? Enlist your childrens’ help and teach them home maintenance skills along the way. Or, if you need help with everyday tasks, show your child how to complete an age-appropriate chore and make it their responsibility to do it regularly.
If any older kids are interested in cars, you could also teach them simple maintenance skills like how to change a tire (with help from parents, of course!).
Even if you don’t have a sewing machine handy, kids can get a lot of use out of learning to hand stitch if they ever get a rip or tear in their clothes. For a simple project to start with, try sewing a button onto a shirt or patching a ripped pair of jeans.
4. Financial Skills
It’s never too early to teach children to make smart decisions with money. If your kids earn an allowance by helping out around the house, work with them to set goals for their money so they can practice working hard and saving their earnings over time. For younger kids, coins can also be used to teach counting and basic addition or subtraction skills.
If you have space in your yard, access to a community garden, or even just enough room for a large planter and plenty of sunshine, you can teach your child how to care for plants. As you water your plants and watch them grow every day, children can learn that small, everyday habits lead to big rewards in the long term. Plus, if you have space to plant some fruits and vegetables, you’ll have plenty of fresh food to eat in the coming months.
Start with a few low-maintenance plants to teach children the basics of gardening. According to Mental Floss, a few of the easiest plants for beginners to grow include:
What’s more rewarding than wearing something that you made all by yourself? Knitting is not only a practical skill, but it’s also a great one to teach younger children since it involves a lot of repetitive motions.
First, teach your child the basics, like how to cast on or make a stitch. Then, move on to a larger and more satisfying project—for example, a scarf. Or, if you have a knitting loom available, try making a simple beanie.
Older kids might also enjoy learning how to crochet, which can be a little more complex than knitting but just as enjoyable. Start by teaching your child how to crochet a chain, a basic skill that will help them make bigger projects later on.