What we learn when we are young can follow us for the rest of our lives.
In my last post on Managing Confinement, I wrote about balancing homeschooling kids with other responsibilities. I alluded to the fact that I would like to teach my kids life lessons to help them in the future. The time in confinement has allowed me to really reflect on this and I feel these 3 areas are particularly important:
- Family Values: I think it is important to teach kids what values we feel are important as a family and to demonstrate this to them as much as possible through our actions. And when we fall short of those values, apologizing to our kids is equally important in demonstrating humility.
- Work Ethic: There are days when it would be so much easier to simply let the kids do whatever they want. But ultimately, they do need guidance and the ability to develop a strong work ethic that will allow them to develop into responsible and dependable adults. For us at this stage, this simply involves the kids taking responsibility for their school work as much as possible, helping out around the house and keeping their rooms in order.
- Financial Responsibility: It’s never too early to start teaching kids about how to manage finances responsibly. This is an area I did not really know how to impart to my kids however after reading various sources, we came up with a plan that we feel is right for our family and which the kids are on board with. There are of course many schools of thought on this with a multitude of approaches. For us, the kids will obtain an allowance once a month in return for helping out with chores around the house. We suggested that for now, they divide the money up equally in 3 jars: Savings, Spending and Giving. If there is something they would like to have outside of their usual needs, birthday and Christmas gifts, they will have to save up for it. I’m hoping that this will teach them about the concept of saving, delayed gratification as well as generosity.
Further reading: I just finished reading this book which I feel is useful in guiding parents about what life skills to teach kids and would be a good read for adolescents (currently free on Amazon Kindle so grab it while you can!)