Have you ever wondered how independent your child actually is? Will your child be able to look after themselves if left alone for a while? Do you think your child is well-equipped with essential life skills to face the world?
It’s absolutely important for children to learn more than just academically. Enrolling them in various activity classes isn’t enough either. If your child can’t look after themselves, they can’t develop essential life skills or the important personality traits developed alongside them.
Life skill education simply cannot stop with the exposure your child receives in school. To learn its importance, a child needs to be taught at home through experiences and training activities. Maximum brain development occurs in the first 5 years of a child’s life so we need to utilize the early years to provide the foundation to stimulate a child’s creative and innovative thinking.
Here are 5 essential life skills every parent must equip their little ones with for the world out there.
Basic Self Defence: In today’s world especially, safety is of utmost importance, and developing self-defense not only makes the child feel more independent but also more confident.
Basic self-defense is a must — be it for your son or your daughter. Most schools these days invest in teaching basic self-defense to children. But if your child’s school does not, don’t hesitate to send them for classes outside.
First-aid and the importance of health: You can’t expect to always be around whenever your child gets a hurt, bite or a rash! So how about empowering them such that they are able to take care in case of an emergency until they reach a grown-up?
This is essentially something the child’s schooling should cover but as a parent/guardian one should strongly encourage its reinforcement at home by teaching your child essential first aid steps. This can be done by familiarizing the kids with a first aid kit and its contents. Children are, after all, excellent learners!
Another important skill is teaching your child to take care of their health. Instead of forcing your child to eat vegetables, talk to them about health risks in eating junk food all the time and explain how the healthy food will benefit them in a way that they can apply to themselves.
Making them socially active or Interact with People: We’ve all taught children about stranger danger but this doesn’t make much logical sense considering every person we’re close to as adults was a stranger to us at some point. Instead, teach your children to do exactly what adults do. Teach them to differentiate between good strangers and bad strangers. Teach them how to interact with good strangers.
Teach them how to make friends, how to be friendly to good adults, and just how they should go about interacting with these people. If we don’t teach children this at a young age, they may not develop positive social skills.
Creative thinking and Innovation skills: Pre-school children should be exposed to a play-based learning environment to enable them to learn, communicate and express themselves from an early age. Learning through the use of audiovisuals, picture books, story-telling, role-playing is helpful to enhance their creative and innovative skills.
Social and cross-cultural skills: Toy- sharing among children including toy libraries can expose a child to a social life and a variety of toys without parents having to purchase all. Toddlers should be encouraged to keep exploring different people and cultures so as to stimulate overall development.
The article has been authored by Meera Vasudev, Flinto R&D Centre & Dr. Pooja Kuray, Senior Medical Officer, Momspresso.