You thought you had a lot of lessons to teach your toddler? Well I hate to break it to you, but potty training and spoon feeding are only messy in the literal terms when it comes to the lessons you will have to teach your teens and tweens. Most of our kids friends are pretty smart and self-sufficient, but every now and then we’ll talk about something and they have no idea how they would solve the issue.
There are a lot of lessons our kids need to know but these are five that are off the top of my head..
You’re not always going to like everyone – And everyone is not going to like you. Better get used to it and figure out how you are going to work your way thru it. I’ve seen too many parents move their kids out of classes because they didn’t “like” the teacher – before they even gave them a chance. While it’s harder in school to ignore and move away from people you’re forced to be with, it’s a good lesson of life to figure out how to tolerate someone long enough to get thru a project.
How to read a recipe – Your kids are going to need to know how to cook one day, so this is a really important skill to have. We love to cook and our girls enjoy working on fun things in the kitchen with us. Sometimes, now that they’re older, we ask and rely on them to help get things ready for dinner during the workweek. While I still have to remind them to “read ALL the directions before you start”, for the most part, they’ve got a good handle on how to do it. One of them can even make a mean red velvet cake!
Righty Tighty, Lefty Loosey – No joke. I did not learn this until I was around 25 years old. Can you imagine going thru your entire life not knowing how the hell to get a cap or a hose on or off on the first try?? My life changed completely when my Dad finally taught me this lesson.
How to do laundry – My friend Arminda tells a funny but true story that when she was growing up in her big family of 7 (?) as soon as you were tall enough to reach the washing machine, you were old enough to do laundry. While I didn’t quite start mine that young, with a family of 5 I promise you – they do their own. Don’t have anything clean to wear? Oh well – guess you should have done your laundry.
How to be a bargain shopper – I don’t care if you have a crap-ton of money, you can always find ways to save. I work hard for my money and I try to hold on to it as long as possible. There are some things that I don’t chimp on but it’s rare that I don’t comparison shop before most purchases. I’ve been taking my girls shopping with me for so long and they’ve learned that if they want something out of the ordinary (Lunchables for instance), they don’t even bring it to my attention if it’s not on sale. They’re also becoming pretty darn good at shopping for their clothes at places like Plato’s Closet and other consignment shops. They’ve discovered that they like getting 3x the amount of stuff for the same amount of money.