Children are our future and the basic homesteading skills they learn will help them face the future prepared.
More and more generations are turning back to the skills they learned as children to help them escape the face-paced crazy lifestyle that surrounds them.
I know for a fact, I ran back to the farming and homemaking skills my parents taught me when the world around me was closing in. I am thankful for those skills and hope I can pass them on to my children and grandchildren.
Forty years ago when my mother was making me cook dinner and do laundry all I could think of was wanting to go out and play, but she knew that the skills she taught me were the skills that would carry me through life.
I made it a point to make sure my children knew basic homesteading and homemaking skills before I sent them off into the world. As parents, we are never sure we’ve done the right thing or wished we would have done things differently, but the skills I made sure my children learned was one of the things I knew I did right.
Make it your goal to teach some basic homesteading skills to your children while they are young and still eager to learn:
Sewing/Crocheting/Knitting- Start off simple and small. Find a fun project that your little girl will love to make.
I started my granddaughter off with a simple square quilted baby blanket for her doll crib. It taught her how to cut fabric, to use a sewing machine and how to match colors.
Laundry/Sorting/Ironing/Stain Removal/Drying – Even children as young as 5 can start sorting laundry. Teaching them how to sort clothes into piles is the first place to start.
Teach them how to separate the whites from the colored clothes and the towels from the jeans. My three-year-old granddaughter can fold clothes better than me at times and loves sharing that job with me.
Cooking/Baking/Meal Planning/Preserving/Reading Recipes – My ten-year-old grandson just got his first kids cookbook and loves to make dinner for his parents. He is now inspiring to be a famous chef.
Cleaning/Schedules/Bed Making/Organizing/All-natural Cleaners – One of the first cleaning lessons a child learns is to clean their room. Take the time to show them the correct way to clean a room.
Help them learn how to organize their toys and make their bed. These very early lessons will be the lessons that carry them through a lifetime of living.
Gardening/Herbs/Flowers/Lawn Care – Children love to be outside, so make gardening a family affair. Teach them to tell the difference between a weed and a plant, help them learn where their food comes from and teach them ways they can feed their families by learning how to plant a garden.
Wood/Chopping/Splitting/Fire Starting – Young children may not be able to chop wood, but as they get older, especially boys should all know the basic skills needed to provide warmth for their family. Young children can learn to stack and haul wood…even if it’s one piece at a time.
Hunting & Fishing/Gun Safety/Woods Survival/Butchering – From an early age, our children and grandchildren have been subjected to chicken butchering, fish cleaning, and hunting safety.
Learning early on that every animal on the farm is here for a purpose helps them understand where their food comes from and they respect the life cycle. Basic small animal butchering was started at the early age of six or seven.
Basic Animal Husbandry –Even family pets fall under this heading. Children that learn from an early age what it means to raise an animal will most likely grow up being very capable of raising other types of animals.
Feeding, watering and cleaning up after an animal is a task even the youngest of children can learn. As they get older allow them to raise rabbits or chickens teaches them responsibility by providing for their basic needs.
Hand Tools/Basic Maintenance – All children should be taught how to use basic hand tools.
One of the greatest saying my husband taught all of our children was “Righty Tighty…Lefty Lucy”…to this day I can still hear them sing that little tune when trying to unscrew or tighten things with threads. Changing batteries in their toys or learning to use a hammer by building their first project is a great way to start.
Are there any homesteading skills you can add to this list?
I would love to hear what skills you feel are important to teach young children.