This week is home economics week on The Front Porch.
Home Economics in the schools is really an institutionalized attempt to replicate the home, so as homeschoolers we have the perfect environment to impart “home ec” in the same, effective way that life skills have been learned through the ages–passed down generation to generation, parent to child, in daily “on the job” training.
As we tame the chaos of meals, clutter, cleaning, budgets and mending, we can apprentice the children alongside us. Relationships are strengthened, they absorb valuable skills. Additionally, household efficiency is increased as the whole family shares in the work!
Homeschoolers have the luxury of being able to learn home-economics in context as a natural part of life. There are great curriculums to help lend a systematic approach or provide additional dimensions to the natural family-style training, but the beauty of home-economics in the homeschool is the seamless practical application aspect.
As you tame the chaos, draw your children along side you–whether they are 18 months or 18 years. Gradeschoolers can help calculate costs as you shop in the grocery store and get an idea of living within a budget. Give a small child a button to sew onto his own scrap of cloth as you tackle the mending basket. Make the same muffin recipe three times in a row with your 8 year old, having her do more of it herself each time. (Then do it a 4th time as only an observer, and on the 5th see if she can do it entirely on her own!) Encourage a child to organize a cupboard or drawer that’s gotten out of control.
Older children can try their hand at managing a month of meals, and grow into budgeting confidence as they handle finances for their hobbies or entrepreneurial endeavors.
(This article is cross posted from my Taming The Chaos column on the HSB Company Blog)
~Domestic Chaos tamer and homeschool mom of 5, Dell writes about home, heart and hearth.~