Teach Your Children Ten Life Skills Before They are Twelve

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I want to launch a small challenge. It’s called “Teach your children ten life skills before they are twelve”!
I consider myself a very good mom, actually a great mom. I shower my son with attention and affection everyday, his happiness is the most important thing to me. For this reason I try my best to make sure he has a great life. With this intention, I end up doing too much for him, including cleaning up after him and getting his school bag ready for the next day. Hence, even great moms make mistakes. I realize that by catering to him like that, I didn’t let him grow. My selfish need for him to depend on me, made him lack some of the basic life skills he should have long known by now. Again, there are several things that I still do for him on a daily basis that I should have taught him to do on his own a while ago. Maybe it’s just fear that he is not going to need me anymore, I don’t know, but I have to change my ways. He is not a baby anymore and, consequently, I have to make sure he matures into an independent little man.

He doesn’t know how to make his bed the proper way, cook a small meal, use simple tools and many other things. Therefore, I put together a list of ten life skills I believe any child should know before they turn twelve. I am going to stick to it and every day, for ten days, he is going to learn something new.

10 life skills to teach children before they are twelve

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  1. Cook a small meal

I’m going to teach him how to cook noodles. It’s super easy and it’s an opportunity to learn how to use the stove. We eat a lot of pasta, so it would be nice for him to contribute and maybe come up with his own signature recipe. Pancakes would be a great alternative if you own a griddle.

2.  Make the bed

Yes, he knows how to pull the sheets and covers up, but I don’t think this constitutes making a bed properly. I’m going to teach him how to do the corners, tuck the sheets in and fluff the pillows.

3. Do a load of laundry

I will show him how to sort the dirty clothes by colors, measure the soap amount needed, and start a quick wash cycle. Afterwards, he will learn to use the dryer.

4. Set the table the proper way

I’m not going to lie, I probably never knew the absolute correct way to set a dinner table. It’s also going to be a learning opportunity for me.

5. Use simple tools

Maybe I will have my husband do this. He will be a better teacher on how to use and select the proper screwdrivers, pliers and hammers for each job.

6. Connect simple electronics

Some game consoles or dvd players are pretty easy to connect to the TV. Follow the instructions and help your child learn about audio/video and hdmi cables, and the purpose of surge protectors.

7. Wrap a gift

This one seems silly, but it requires a learned skill to wrap a present the right way. The holidays are near so start practicing with your child.

8. Write a letter

Nowadays everything is electronic, we text and we send emails. Writing a letter is out of style! I think a child should still know a proper letter format, and most of all, how to address it and put postage on it.

9. Take care of plants and/or pets

It is important to know what a pet can or cannot eat, or how much to water a plant. Taking care of animals and plants, also teaches a little bit of responsibility.

10. Order something online 

This seems to be the way to shop in our children’s generation. Amazon offers a new service for  teens that allows them to have their own account. Of course this account is connected to their parent’s one. Your child can place an order that you can later overview and approve. I believe it is a neat way to teach your child how online shopping is done, and how to be responsible with money.

I found some great parenting resources through the Parenting Super Bundle from Ultimate bundles. It’s a huge collection of e-books, e-courses and much more, for a very low price. If you just take a look, I’m sure you will find some very interesting info about children’s discipline, education, food, faith & beyond.

I would love to hear you suggestions on life skills you thought your children or, if you tried this challenge, give me some feedback on it!

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85 Comments

  1. Susnnah

    November 24, 2017 at 12:33 pm

    I love this! My sons happiness is my #1, too, but it’s so important to help them
    Learn thins for themselves. That will make a happy adult!

    1. Jessica Reed

      November 24, 2017 at 4:26 pm

      Yes, you are absolutely right!

  2. Jennifer Weedon Palazzo

    November 24, 2017 at 1:26 pm

    These are great. It’s so, so important for kids to learn to do this stuff on their own.

  3. Erica @ Coming up Roses

    November 25, 2017 at 12:54 am

    These are great things to teach your kids how to do. It’s amazing how many stories you hear these days about people who don’t know how to do laundry. It’s so important that they’re able to do that.

  4. Melissa

    November 25, 2017 at 2:12 pm

    I love this!! We don’t have kids yet, but this is something my nieces and nephews could benefit from! I think it is so important to get kids in the kitchen young so they can learn not only how to cook but develop some necessary life skills too! Also, doing things as simple as setting the table or a load of laundry is going to really make a difference as they grow up and don’t need to rely on others for those things! <3

  5. Sara Flanagan

    November 25, 2017 at 2:12 pm

    Oh I love this! Such important things to learn as you grow ♡. Thanks for sharing! ^^

    1. Jessica Reed

      November 25, 2017 at 10:12 pm

      Thank you!

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