15 important skills to teach your children before they turn 10

15 important skills to teach your children before they turn 10

Children are taught many skills as they grow older, but some of these are better learned earlier than later.

Putting your children through the public school system certainly prepares for the myriad challenges they will face as adolescents and adults in a world characterized by complex social and bureaucratic systems, but they may not always learn some basic life skills that they need to get by. According to Fatherly.com, these are the skills parents need to ensure their child has by the age of 10.

Not everything can be learned in schools. (Pixabay)
Not everything can be learned in schools. (Pixabay)

1. They have your address and telephone number memorized

Drill your children on your home address and your telephone number until they can recite it by heart. This is to ensure that if they ever need to reach you in an emergency, they know where to go or how to call you. Have them write it down in a notebook they carry around if they have trouble memorizing it.

Have your child memorize your phone number. (Pixabay)
Have your child memorize your phone number. (Pixabay)

2. They can follow directions on a map

Basic navigation skills can help your children maintain some degree of autonomy. Have them draw a map of the route they take to school every morning and walk one day with them and see if they can follow the map accurately. Learning to understand the spaces around them will help them if they ever get lost.

Reading a map can help if they ever get lost. (Pixabay)
Reading a map can help if they ever get lost. (Pixabay)

3. They know how to save money

Part of giving your children an allowance and teaching them to handle money is also teaching them to spend it wisely. Saving up money can benefit them for life, so have them save anywhere between one-fourth and one-half of their allowance. Once they've saved up enough, open up a savings account in their name.

Saving money will come in handy years down the line. (Pixabay)
Saving money will come in handy years down the line. (Pixabay)

4. They can calculate change

Every child needs to know how the small coins add up to the bigger ones. Show them how much change they can make from a dollar, and ask them to replicate your demonstration. If they get it right, give them a few coins as an incentive, and practice regularly.

Teach them to make change. (Pixabay)
Teach them to make change. (Pixabay)

5. They can distinguish real news from fake news

As interactions and information exchanges begin to occur primarily on the Internet, your child will need some good e-literacy skills, in addition to merely being able to write an e-mail. Help them research the difference between real articles and fake articles, and also teach them to beware of dangerous people online.

Help your children identify fake news. (Pixabay)
Help your children identify fake news. (Pixabay)

6. They are able to clean their room

Sweeping, vaccuming, and mopping are all useful life skills to learn before the lethargy of the teenage years set in. Aiding your children in learning how to organize their space and sort their things will help them be more organized in general as well.

Give your child a tour of the cleaning supplies. (Pixabay)
Give your child a tour of the cleaning supplies. (Pixabay)

7. They know how to keep themselves clean

Some basic hygiene habits need to be set in place before your children reach the age of 10. Instill in them healthy habits such as brushing their teeth thoroughly twice a day and flossing in between. Show them how to completely clean themselves in the shower and to protect their skin from the sun when going outdoors.

Basic hygiene is a must. (Picture used for representational purposes only.) (Pixabay)
Basic hygiene is a must. (Picture used for representational purposes only.) (Pixabay)

8. They can enjoy being by themselves

Children who can keep themselves occupied or be alone with their thoughts will save them from anxiety in situations where they are left to themselves. If they can play by themselves and find things to keep their minds busy, they will give you some time to yourself as well.

Encourage your child to occupy themselves with reading or other activities. (Picture used for representational purposes only.) (Pixabay)
Encourage your child to occupy themselves with reading or other activities. (Picture used for representational purposes only.) (Pixabay)

9. They know how to be polite in conversation and at the table

Knowing where to keep their elbows, where to put a napkin, how to excuse themselves, and how to use cutlery are all skills that can be taught from a young age. In conversation, too, teach them to say "Please," "Thank you," and "Excuse me."

Table manners will help them wherever they go. (Pixabay)
Table manners will help them wherever they go. (Pixabay)

10. They dress appropriately for the weather

Teaching your children when to wear sweaters and woolen clothes and when to dress down for warmer weather is something to be done before they turn 10. Not just dressing appropriately for the weather, but also learning how to match clothes and pair colors is useful knowledge.

Help your child dress for the weather. (Picture used for representational purposes only.) (Pixabay)
Help your child dress for the weather. (Picture used for representational purposes only.) (Pixabay)

11. They have a basic awareness of emergency response

Explain to your children the situations in which they should dial 911. For milder situations, teach them how to treat a burn with running water or a swelling with a cold compress, or how to stop bleeding from an open wound by applying pressure, and how to pinch their nostrils during a nosebleed.

Fundamental first aid skills can save them from trouble. (Pixabay)
Fundamental first aid skills can save them from trouble. (Pixabay)

12. They are comfortable in the water

A large proportion of the world's population is unable to swim or stay afloat in water. While most Americans believe that they can swim, a large number of them lack some of the basic skills that could keep them alive in the water. Make sure that your children get acquainted with the water at a young age.

Your child should be able to survive in shallow water at the very least. (Picture used for representational purposes only.) (Pixabay)
Your child should be able to survive in shallow water at the very least. (Picture used for representational purposes only.) (Pixabay)

13. They can take care of a pet or a plant

Being able to care for someone or something other than themselves will help children be responsible and understand the impact that their actions can have on another life. If a pet like a dog, a hamster, or even goldfish is not feasible, have them take care of a plant.

Children can learn a lot from caring for a pet. (Picture used for representational purposes only.) (Pixabay)
Children can learn a lot from caring for a pet. (Picture used for representational purposes only.) (Pixabay)

14. They can ride a bicycle

Riding a bike is a great way to exercise the body and develop important motor and coordination skills. Once you learn, you never forget, so start your children off with training wheels and have them grow accustomed to pedaling around before switching to the more difficult two-wheeled experience.

Being able to ride a bicycle has multiple developmental benefits. (Picture used for representational purposes only.) (Pixabay)
Being able to ride a bicycle has multiple developmental benefits. (Picture used for representational purposes only.) (Pixabay)

15. They are able to make small talk

As the world grows more digital and interactions are increasingly had online rather than in person, people often grow comfortable hiding behind their devices rather than deal with real-life people. Engaging your children in conversation about their day or about other topics of interest can help them gain basic conversation skills.

Teach your kid basic conversational skills. (Pixabay)
Teach your kid basic conversational skills. (Pixabay)

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