Sometimes I forget the whole reason that I homeschool, other than the fact that the Bible isn’t taught in schools, and I get caught up thinking my daughter isn’t learning if we aren’t using worksheets or books. Then I get a little push from God telling me what I’m teaching her doesn’t always need to come from books and “school” stuff. We do many things together and travel without calling the trips “field trips” but they really are.
We travel to Georgia, often, by car, and the sights she sees are learning experiences, even if we don’t stop to inspect them closely. She has learned what mile markers are and how to tell distance using them. She knows that our gas up point is a little more than halfway to our destination. Also, she knows that where we gas up is a state that sells fireworks, and that not all states do sell them. Some adults don’t even know this.
She knows that the Mall of Georgia is in Buford, GA and that it has over 200 stores. Maybe not on a test but if a friend asked her where to go in Georgia, she would send them there. Steaks and Shakes, a restaurant franchise exclusive to Georgia is a restaurant we frequent and she is aware that it isn’t in any other states. These seem small but when you figure the places we travel, all together, she is accumulating a lot of knowledge.
We love camping and fishing, too. She knows how to setup a tent, with help. She can bait a worm, but chooses not to, and catch a fish. Arianna is very helpful when camping and she knows how to start a campfire but also the dangers of fire. She has a survival backpack that she knows how to use if needed and she helped to pack it. The importance of this backpack can range from lost in the woods to earthquake, fire, storms, or manmade disasters. We believe in being prepared.
We teach our daughter money management, too and Arianna is very bright! She opened her own savings account, without being asked to or pleaded with. She has under $5.00 in it but she has one just the same.
Time management we all learn everyday by the chores we do around the house and the things we would like to do are scheduled around the needs of the day. We manage this without a schedule….somehow. Lol.
Sharing, caring, taking turns and following directions are also being taught and our kids never see us teach them these as a skill but learn them regardless, as long as we are showing them and teaching them the way God wants us to. Friendships teach these skills, too, and friendships show how to work as a team, too, so do families that work together to make a project a reality.
Household basics are taught through chores and even getting the mail from the box (also learn to cross the road). Organization is picked up while picking up toys and putting away clean laundry, sorting dirty from clean, too.
I am teaching life skills, even if I’m not at my desk with my mouth speaking on a subject of study. She may not comprehend that she is learning something but it is being learned. And manners are learned, especially yes Ma’am and no Ma’am, along with please and thank you. We live in Virginia and Ma’am and Sir are respectful terms that we expect our child to learn, so I use them, too, in business calls, so she can hear the importance of using them. Respect is high in my book of life skills and I expect that my children respect me and others. This lesson can only be learned at home.
Do you ever feel like you forgot to teach this day or that? Remember that a life skill was learned even without either of you realizing it. God blesses us with these gifts, too.