When we send our little ones off to school, we are expecting them to come home full of new knowledge, excited to tell us all about their day and all that they learned. But sometimes, the reality is much different, and our children need encouragement from us to learn things that they may not be learning in the classroom.
While it’s essential for parents to demonstrate the importance of reading and studying, it is just as vital to a child’s development to teach them other life skills that are consequences of experiential learning.
In the traditional classroom, many teachers focus on teaching children certain memorization techniques, which allows for the quick and easy intake of large amounts of information in a short timeframe. But this sort of education may, in fact, cause children to dislike going to school, diminishing their curiosity and desire to learn. At home, parents should encourage alternative learning techniques in order to give our children the best education possible—full of all the lessons children may not be learning at school, such as:
Balancing learning with practice time
In traditional school settings, our children oftentimes leave for school early in the morning and don’t return home until the late afternoon, leaving time for homework, dinner, and bedtime. This leaves little room for extracurricular activities, which are essential to a child’s development. Having time to practice sports, or to immerse themselves in their passions, is vital to growing your child’s interests into meaningful hobbies. Balancing academic work with time for practicing sports or hobbies is critical to a child’s overall well-being.
While our children may take health classes at school, they may not learn how to actually practice being healthy. As parents, we need to recognize that it is our duty to show our children how to identify healthy foods and how to exercise. Studies in child development have shown that children who spend time gardening with their parents are healthy for their body and soul—which is a life skill that is definitely not taught in school. Our children should learn from a young age that healthy eating habits and regular physical activity will help them feel their best and lead to a happy lifestyle.
By showing our children the ropes that aren’t taught in traditional classroom settings, like the importance of healthy habits and growing our passions through practice, parents can encourage positive lifestyle choices and life skills.