One benefit my family has noticed since we moved home for school is how much my children can contribute to and learn about the running of our house and business. Our youngest was only three at the time, and she has been able to learn and experience so much more in the areas of "basic life skills" than our older two children simply because she has never spent her days away at school.
Here are some great examples of essential and confidence-building skills your homeschooler can learn, no matter how young they are:
1) Sweep the kitchen
You can show your child how to begin at one end of the room and sweep toward a central location. My kids still want to be the one who 'gets' to sweep because they love using the dustpan.
2) Make a sandwich
Younger children may need the ingredients laid out for them ahead of time. It can be fun to make a "sandwich buffet" for lunch one day, laying out many different ingredient choices and letting each person build their own meal.
3) Fold laundry
Our routine began with younger children folding napkins, facecloths and hand towels. Now each person folds and puts away their own clothing and we all work on the community pile (the same towels and napkins!) together.
4) Make a phone call
Whether you have a home phone or are cell-phone only, your children can dial up a relative. It's such a pleasure for them to repeat the numbers back as they press the buttons, or follow the directions to scroll through a menu.
5) Wipe down surfaces
Sinks, furniture, mirrors, windows, countertops...The list is longer than my arm. It can be such fun to get a cloth (especially if it is one you folded and put away yourself!), wet and squeeze it out, then wipe away a visible mess.
These skills become especially handy to your children and incredibly helpful to their mother once they get closer to double-digits. Parenting a homeschooler creates endless opportunities for learning; take advantage of this and give your kids a head start on the nuts and bolts caring for themselves and their things.
What skill have you been surprised by one of your very young children performing?