Where to start?

Early! Don’t wait till your student’s final year of high school. If you do, you’ll create relational tension and strife. Cramming all of the necessary life skills down your child’s throat a year before they leave your home will rob you of much needed time to build relational credit before they fly the coup.

Make a plan.

As soon as your student enters middle school, grab your calendar and set aside once a month ‘date nights’. Engage your son or daughter’s interest by involving them in decisions. As they mature and evolve, they will pick things that interest them which generates a thirst to learn.

How to involve them?

1. Create a list of date night places you can afford to eat.

2. Create a list of the list skills you want to teach your student.

3. Set aside an evening every month to go on a date.

4. Using the lists you created, ask your child to pick one place they want to eat, and one skill they want to learn.

5. Decide who is best suited to teach that skill – father, mother, grandparents, family friend, mentor, etc. When possible ‘do’ and/or ‘demonstrate’ the skill rather than ‘talking’ or giving verbal instructions.

Make a list of life skills

How to:

1. Change a tire and schedule regular car maintenance

2. Sort and do laundry

3. Iron clothes

4. Shop for grocery and clothes

5. Use a vacuum cleaner and empty it

6. Make their bed

7. Cook simple, healthy and economical meals

8. Do the dishes

9. Clean and use cleaning products safely

10. Schedule a doctor’s appointment and fill prescriptions

11. Create a budget to live within their finances means

12. Use a credit card wisely and be aware of pitfalls of using credit poorly

13. Pay bills on time

14. Maintain a calendar

15. Prioritize tasks

16. Exercise good personal hygiene

17. Be self aware

18. Solve problems

19. Use good social skills and manners including the ability to ask for forgiveness and admit fault

20. Create boundaries and respect themselves in the decisions they make

21. Use public transportation safely

22. Protect their digital ID

23. Memorize a few vital phone numbers and their SS #

24. Carry their insurance and vital information at all times

25. Do routine household maintenance like changing light bulbs, unclogging the toilet, etc

26. How to tip

27. Save documents for the sake of taxes

28. How to deal with a fender bender without having a melt down or calling home

29. Make appointments

A word of caution

Once you teach a skill, give them the space to practice it. We all have different learning styles and brain dominance. This means there is a very high possibility that your child might tackle few or all the tasks differently than you do – that okay! Additionally give them the space to fail without criticizing them. Often, failures and mistakes are the best teachers.


Let us help you get your students ready for life after high school. We make their college and career path our priority – contact us today.