J and I decided with the new year to introduce a new section to our homeschooling curriculum. Once a month, on the first of each month, we will skip regular school lessons and, instead, focus on one particular thing we think adults need to know. Things that a person can somehow miss, unless they are specifically told.
January’s lesson was Household plumbing. I took the kids on a tour of the basement, pointing out shut-off valves, water heater relief valves, and explaining how the water flows. We also talked about toilet tanks and how they can be tweaked to work better. If the house starts flooding while no adults are home, I hope my kids can make a mad dash for the basement and torque the main valve shut.
February’s lesson was answering the question, “what the heck to adults spend all that money on?” We talked about housing, insurance, taxes, maintenance, groceries, cars, and all them myriad things that come out of a monthly budget. The children were a little bit wide-eyed by the end.
We’re making a list of future topics. Things we want to spend some time making sure we have told the kids. There’s a lot of stuff that a person needs to know when they are in college or just after.
How to do laundry: separating colors, stains, laundromats, public laundry etiquette.
Renting an apartment: rent, utilities, landlords, what to look for in terms of safety and reliability.
Buying a car: auto loans, used vs. new, maintenance and insurance costs, how to talk to salespeople
Getting a job: contacts, resumes, interviews, clothes
Credit cards: how they are a trap of monumental proportions, how to use them safely and cautiously.
There’s more, of course. This is what we came up with in ten minutes.
What do you wish someone had told you before you were faced with it as a young adult? What life skills are you certain every young person should know?
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