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What to Consider when Teaching A Child New Life Skills

What is your child's morning routine before going to school? Do they put their clothes on and tie their shoelaces by themselves? These are very basic life skills that children should be able to do from a very young age. “Life skills”, as most parents associate them with their children’s overall development to be successful academically, is actually a set of skills which are used for helping children to be a good community member, overcome problems and to respond to the effect of peer pressure and bullying.

Life skills begin at home and are reinforced at school. Children’s development including social, cognitive, emotional and academic are the responsibility of both parents and teachers. In addition, children will enhance their life skills if they are in a healthy and supportive environment. Parents know that life can be so challenging as their children grow up. Learning new life skills can be exciting and rewarding for a child. Learning the simplest thing can help children to build their confidence in knowing that they can do it all by themselves. Here are some points to consider when teaching a child new life skills.

● Your child’s readiness

Every child has a different personality, age, coordination and physical ability. People used to think children were ready for primary school if they could count numbers, read simple words or write their first name. Readiness does not mean just knowing the academic basics. It means a child has a willingness to try something new and be confident in the process of learning.

● Help children to be more independent in doing tasks.

Sometimes, being a parent makes one feel deeply responsible for his/her children’s needs. An example is when your child goes to school for the first time, they take a longer time to tie their shoes and you help them do that. It turns out you unconsciously cultivate a lot of dependence on your children. Teaching new life skills is challenging yet very beneficial for children. Let your child start doing simple things such as preparing their books, tidying up their bed or tying their shoelaces. Let them learn from the process. They will do it faster and better as they practice more.

● Managing emotions and other social skills

Teaching kids how to manage their emotions, be respectful and learn what it means to be a good community member will help them to learn important social and emotional skills. As children learn from their surroundings, you can start to give examples by showing them how to show empathy for others, build healthy relationship with others and make responsible decisions.

Teaching children new life skills is about how to introduce appropriate lessons based on the children's readiness and mental development. A child may stay on the first stage while another finishes in 5 minutes and is ready for the next stage. Do not rush through the process of learning. Allow children to feel confident to complete the task until you are not involved in the process. One day, children will be ready and confident enough to try new things and finish them by themselves.


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