Life skills to master over the summer

Life skills to master over the summer

by Karen Bradbury
Stripes Okinawa

Got a pair of bored kids on your hands? They’ve had their book learning throughout the academic year; now, how about setting their sights on critical life skills that will stand them in good stead throughout their adult lives? Fostering age-appropriate independence and building self-confidence are among the greatest gifts you can pass on to a child. The next time you hear the complaint “there’s nothing to do around this place,” counter with one of these suggestions:

Learn the rules of the road and right-of-way as it applies to pedestrians and cyclists

Count money and verify the correct change has been given 

Braid a rope, weave and tie knots 

Use a handheld can opener 

Memorize the numbers to dial in the event of an emergency 

Brew a pot of coffee or tea 

Sew on a patch or a button

Pack a suitcase for an overnight stay at a friend’s house

Carry out household chores such as dusting, vacuuming, washing dishes and disinfecting surfaces

Place an order, or make a reservation or appointment over the phone

Follow table etiquette while dining out

Separate and wash a load of laundry

Iron a shirt and a pair of trousers 

Pump gas

Hold breath underwater, tread water and swim

Change a flat tire on a bicycle

Cook a balanced meal

Check the car’s oil level 

Safely interact with domestic animals 

Mow a lawn, trim shrubbery or plant and look after a simple garden

Master the phonetic alphabet

Learn self-defense moves and strategies for keeping safe

Use public transportation, to include reading timetables, purchasing tickets and making connections 

Understand the basics of nutrition and count the total number of calories consumed in a day

Orienteering, to include reading a compass and determining north

Administer CPR, first aid and how to use a defibrillator 

Read music and play an instrument 

Understand the rules of play and scoring for major sports

Learn to evaluate the accuracy of online information and fact-check sources

Blind type on a keyboard 



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