Friday, 24 July 2015

Back to Basics

When we think about what our children
need to know to grow into well adjusted, functioning adults,
we think of not only their education but their life skills.

One thing that you will notice from generation to generation, is that many of these life skills are getting lost.  For example most of us parents know how to use a washing machine but when it breaks most of us cannot fix it. We spend money calling the repairman or just buying a new one. We end up driving to Laundromats to wash rather than washing by hand.  Our Grandparents would have hand washed and not thought twice about it.  As parents we teach our children to use a washing machine but very few think to teach their child how to hand wash, or basic maintenance for a washing machine. 

When it comes to cooking, the skills we pass on as generations pass, involve learning to use more and more gadgets. Our recipes change to reflect this too. What happens when our children leave home?  I doubt many can afford all the appliances we all use these days.  It's all well and good to marvel at the convenience of a Thermomix when you have one and use it, but it's also doing a disservice to your children who grow up not learning how to cope and cook with just a set of basic pots and pans. Quite ironic when most parents claim to use a Thermomix or gadgets as time savers to spend more time with their children. Maybe the best way to spend that time with your child is to be in the kitchen together cooking with good old pots and pans. 

It's for this reason, that I want my son to learn 'Back to Basics' life skills.  
I want him to be able to function when he starts out living on his own.  I want him to save money by cooking rather than eating take out food.  Cooking using the basics like a few pots, pans, utensils, toaster and kettle.  Washing dishes without a dishwasher. Washing clothes by hand if he needs to. Scrubbing the floor without a steam mop. Mending clothes without throwing them away over a missing button. Changing the oil on the car and basic car maintenance. How to catch a fish and grow vegetables. How to use basic tools, mow the lawn, and replace a tap washer. 

We might be raising children who will live in a new amazing world with more technology than we could ever dream of, but until they can afford to buy that technology themselves, they need to survive using basic life skills. 

Don't get me wrong, I'm not expecting my child to get up each morning and milk a cow to be able to have milk on his breakfast cereal.  I'd like him to understand the process though and respect where his milk comes from.  I just think it's important to teach the next generation with knowledge from past generations.  

Too often we get caught up with how to educate our children for jobs that don't exist yet in fields that haven't been dreamt of yet. What we forget, is that all jobs that will be created are done so from a need in the present or past. So won't it stand to reason that if a child has been educated and taught life skills from present education curriculum available and life skills from generations past and present, that they will have a great foundation which they can build on?

'Back to Basics' skills will never 'go out of style' or not be useful. 
It's an advantage to give our kids this foundation.  

So when my son leaves home and is apartment/house hunting, he won't be hung up on needing an expensive one because it comes with the much needed dishwasher. He won't spend a fortune on expensive cooking gadgets and cleaning appliances.  He can save money for his future by putting in some hard work, doing things himself, the 'old' way', not needing to call a repairman, mechanic or mowing service.  
Instead he can call and invite me over and cook me a nice dinner LOL. 

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