Written by Surya Vignesh, GCIE Head, Global Indian International School, Abu Dhabi
Education has witnessed a remarkable shift towards STEM and STEAM in an era dominated by data and technology. But what degree of importance does it give to a student’s life skills? Are we confident that the children are capable enough to make judgments and sail through real-world difficulties including academic scenarios?
This is where the importance of life skills comes in. Life skill learning is a delicate subject in education and the most successful life skill development happens at home. Children learn quickly when parents play an active part in their education and the ideal time for life skill learning is during vacation when they are spending more time at home.
Here are some suggestions for activities that parents can take up with their children during vacations:
Money Management: Managing money is an essential tool for survival in the real world. During vacations, take your child to the supermarket with a fixed amount of cash for buying essential groceries and make them understand how to meet the requirements with the available resource, this will help them understand the basic lessons of financial management and how to money wisely.
Cooking and Kitchen Duties: Educating children about the importance of healthy eating, cooking a simple meal, operating kitchen appliances safely and maintaining hygiene is a useful and basic skill that every child should be taught from home.
Laundry: It’s never too early to start teaching children about doing laundry. It is a life skill that they will definitely need when they live on their own. Let them sort the clothes, measure the detergent and operate the washing machine. This will give them a sense of responsibility and also help them understand how to use different appliances.
Gardening: Gardening is a great way to teach children the importance of caring for plants and the environment as a whole. It also instils a sense of responsibility in them. Therefore during vacation, let them help you in the garden, whether it is watering the plants or plucking the weeds.
Cleaning the House: Involve children in sorting their toys after play, let them do their part and learn the importance of keeping their surroundings clean.
Grooming and Personal Hygiene: Personal hygiene is vital for both our physical and mental health. Get them accustomed to the basics of personal hygiene like taking care of their hair, skin, and nails.
Remembering Important Phone Numbers: This can be a lifesaver, it’s important to teach your children how to dial important phone numbers (parents, police, family members, and so on) in case of an emergency. Encourage them to memorize all important phone numbers. You can help them learn numbers through a fun memory game to remember the numbers easily.
Life skills enable children with the ability to address issues from multiple perspectives and discover a variety of practical answers based on resources, cost and time. This also impacts the ability of a child to interact and communicate their ideas effectively. Life experience equips youngsters to think independently, foster social skills and assist them in dealing with bullying, fears and insecurities. A little progress each day adds to big results in life skill development.