Overcast   29.0F  |  Forecast »
Edit Module

Home Ec 'Life Skills' Lessons – at Home

Feel like your child's school isn’t delivering the 411 on cooking, money and other important everyday lessons? Metro Parent has you covered!

As a school subject goes, home economics is history. But that's only in title and focus – and, depending on where in southeast Michigan you live, your school district's budget. Today's kids are learning about everyday stuff like cooking, auto maintenance – and, increasingly, finances – under the umbrella of "life skills" and "family consumer sciences."

Still, although these programs can seamlessly weave in core subjects like math and English, tight times can land them on the chopping block. Looking for a little "home ec" rescue on the homefront? Metro Parent has you covered with a few DIY lessons. Read on for resources.

Finances

A tanking economy, swelling credit-card debt, the crashed housing market: The signs are pretty clear grownups haven't been so great with managing money. But it's never to late – or early – to instill these lessons in your kids.

Start with our top 10 tips on raising a cost-conscious kid, including host talk about money, how to maximize an allowance experience, and requiring children to wait to make big purchases – all setting the groundwork for good budgeting.

We've also got insight on gaining control of your family's finances – a process that can also involve (and teach) your kids. Taking a trip soon? Get them on board with cutting the travel food budget.

Cooking

Speaking of food: When it comes to meal prep, plenty of young adults are in some hot water. How many college kids do you know who unwrap and nuke their dinners? Bad habits can lead to poor health and certainly fuel concerns like obesity – not to mention a big disconnect from what we're eating (battle that, incidentally, by visiting a farmers' market in southeast Michigan when the weather's warm).

The food pyramid has been updated in recent years: Get the 411 on healthy, balanced meals, including digestible nutrition tidbits on fruits, veggies, breads and meats, plus the skinny on fats. Then, score some recipes that are super-savvy time recipes in our "cook once, eat twice" article, where leftovers are easily reincarnated on the run (while you're at it, check out author Kristen J. Gough's Crumbs blog, packed to the gills with healthy and tasty recipes galore, for all levels of chefs). Wanna throw in some eating etiquette for good measure? Heck – these are things even a 5-year-old should know!

Autos and home

When it comes to cars, there's no need to be a "grease monkey" – but teens and adults alike could stand to be more attuned to their autos. Our top 10 car maintenance tips were written with moms in mind, but it's a way-manageable list you can discuss with your kids – from observing oil and checking tire pressure to learning your way around the crucial battery. And when it comes to the pros, find the right car repair shop in advance.

That warzone of a room isn't going to magically fix itself when your kid gets a place of his or her own. On that front, browse our eight ideas on regularly (and effectively) cleaning out closets, along with tips from Michigan professionals on organizing your house. Got the advantage of starting them early? Here's how effectively managing kids' chores can also help – and how to teach your kid one of the most basic skills of all: Making the bed. (You may event know a few adults who could use a refresher; why not your teen?)

Add your comment:
Edit Module
Edit Module
Advertisement
Edit Module

More »Latest Articles & Blog Posts

Hanukkah Crafts for Kids: Holiday Picture Frame

Hanukkah Crafts for Kids: Holiday Picture Frame

If you're celebrating the holiday and looking for quick and easy crafts for kids, this fun and affordable little keepsake is a great way to display family memories.

Dad Gets Unexpected Reaction to Terrible Christmas Gifts

Dad Gets Unexpected Reaction to Terrible Christmas Gifts

British dad pranks his kids with bad Christmas presents, but didn't get the reaction he was expecting – and it's pretty sweet.

Simple Holiday Family Crafts to Make with On-Hand Material

Simple Holiday Family Crafts to Make with On-Hand Material

Does your family have paper cups, Legos, plastic spoons or toilet-paper rolls lying around? Transform them into angels, snowmen and even a chimney for Santa!

Bath Time Safety Tips for Babies and Toddlers

Bath Time Safety Tips for Babies and Toddlers

What's the best way to bathe your child? How can you keep them safe in the tub? A pediatric doctor at St. John Hospital and Medical Center in Detroit has tips.

Snowman Dessert Recipes: Tasty and Cute Ideas

Snowman Dessert Recipes: Tasty and Cute Ideas

Who doesn't love Frosty the Snowman? Kids will enjoy making – and eating! – some of these adorable and delicious snowman recipes.

Holiday Stamping Favorite Supplies from Stampin' Up

Holiday Stamping Favorite Supplies from Stampin' Up

Crafty company Stampin' Up offers a variety of fun stampers, punches and paper that transform into cool gift tags, cards and other fun DIY projects.

British Mom Sells Breast Milk to Pay for Christmas Gifts

British Mom Sells Breast Milk to Pay for Christmas Gifts

A mom of four from Manchester, England gets $20 for a bottle of her breast milk, which she sells online, reportedly to buy her kids presents for the holidays.

Edit Module
Advertisement
Edit Module
Advertisement
Edit Module
Advertisement