Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Homeschool Essentials for Graduating - Home Management Skills

Homeschool Essentials for Graduating - Home Management Skills on Homeschool Coffee Break @

When you first left home to go to college or to live on your own, were you well-prepared to handle household responsibilities on your own? I have to admit, I really wasn't. My parents had set a great example, and they required all of us kids to pitch in and help around the house. So there were lots of things I did know, but I still felt like I was floundering. Although I knew how to follow recipes and could bake almost anything, I really didn't know how to scramble eggs when I got married!

I decided that it would be a priority in our home and homeschool that kids would learn how to manage a household before they left the nest. I also think this is one of the many benefits of homeschooling - it's natural for kids to take an active part in running the household when they spend more of their time in the home and with the family. Especially as I started to realize how many kids were going off to college without knowing how to do their own laundry or how to fix a meal that didn't involve the microwave or the drive-thru. My oldest three are boys, and I figured they should be able to look after themselves as far as laundry and meals and housekeeping so they could live on their own successfully, whether completely on their own or when they get married.

Sometimes we assume kids know how to do stuff around the house, and how often, but it's possible that they don't! Some of the essential skills I have been teaching my kids include: laundry, dishes, general cleaning, grocery shopping, meal preparation, household maintenance, vehicle maintenance, yard maintenance (okay, those last two are my hubby's job to teach), balancing a checkbook, and handling personal finances. I'm not even very good at some of those things, and sometimes it's a matter of telling my kids I hope they learn from my mistakes!
Continue easing them to independence. Hopefully they've been learning life skills all the way along. The skills they need to learn might start to look a little different as they become young adults, but they need to be able to do for themselves, take responsibility, and make good choices. Think of yourself as a sort of life coach, and you're getting your kids - and yourself! - through the transition from dependent child to independent adult. They know how to make a sammich - now let them cook a meal for the family once a week. (I wish I'd done this. I still have a chance with my daughter, I guess. LOL) After all, they'll need scavenge their own meals when they move out, and you'll want them to have more than scavenger-level skills. Adjust their household responsibilities to their age and skill level. They will need to know how to do their own laundry and dishes, do their own grocery shopping, take care of household maintenance and yard care duties, do their own banking, pay their own bills, etc someday. If they don't move out as soon as they graduate high school, you will want them to clean up after themselves at the very least. Don't let them graduate high school without knowing the basics of running a simple household. Expect them to take responsibility for their own actions and choices. They should learn how to be trustworthy workers, and that they should contribute positively to society, rather than sit around expecting the world to cater to them.
I wrote that as part of post about life with teenagers in August. You can read the whole thing here:  T is for Teenagers. That's what I'm working on - moving kids toward independence, so that they not only graduate from high school with a decent-looking transcript, but with the skills to look after themselves. I hope that we're doing a good enough job that my future daughters-in-law and son-in law will be grateful!

This post is part of a series: 5 Days of Homeschooling Essentials - Homeschool Essentials for Graduating
5 Days of Homeschooling Essentials
Other members of the Schoolhouse Review Crew are writing about Homeschooling Essentials this week as well. Visit the Crew Blog for links to all 89 participating blogs and see what they consider essential for homeschooling. Don't have time to visit all of them? Try this sampling from the entire group - you'll still get a variety of ideas on what's essential, and there's something here for everyone, whether you're a homeschooling veteran or just thinking about getting started.

Brandi @ Brandi Raae talks about the importance of character today, and how homeschool is a great place to develop godly, positive character in our kids.
Jennifer @ Chestnut Grove Academy has another giveaway today - this time for the book Circle Time. Visit her blog to find out more!
Jenn @ Teaching Two Stinkers
Wendy @ Simplicity Breeds Happiness
Jodi @ Insane in the Mombrain
Lynn @ Ladybug Chronicles
Lisa @ A Rup Life, Jordyn @ Almost Supermomand Crystal @ Crystal Starr Blog are all co-sponsors of an iPad Mini Giveaway as part of the 5 Days series, so be sure to visit their blogs and enter.

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Brandi said...

I really appreciate reading your posts since you've already experienced kids leaving the nest. I didn't know how to cook much of anything when I got married, and I didn't learn to do laundry until I was probably a senior in high school. Sad, I know. I wanted things to be different in my house, so responsibility is huge here. My kids have to start doing their own laundry when they are 10. I need to be better about letting them help in the kitchen. I do every once in a while, but it is so much more work for me!!

Lynn said...

This is a must read post for all teenagers.. It's so important that we train them for the world with the basics of household responsibilities.. love it!

Wendy @ Ladybug Daydreams said...

Great post. It's one of those things I think parents know but struggle to actually implement. Thanks for sharing :)

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