Times have changed, and while most parents will always do their best to bring their kids up properly, not many kids these days are being taught how to handle themselves in the real world, ‘adulting’ as some call it. Kids formerly learned basic life skills such as cooking cleaning, ironing, plumbing, car maintenance, and even resuscitation skills at home. Nowadays, there’s “so much” going on in the life of kids and teens that there’s barely any time to learn these important skills. So many kids move on to college without knowing how to do simple stuff for themselves, and that’s never a good way to start life.
A high school in Lumpkin County, Georgia, assessed the effect of the education gap and came up with an incredible solution – albeit the best we’ve seen in a long time.
At Lumpkin County High School, “ADULTING DAY” is an entire day set out to teach seniors on their way to college how to handle basic real-life tasks and learn to be self-sufficient . All 273 seniors are mandated to learn everything from ironing and plumbing basics to resuscitation and car maintenance skills.
Several seniors at the school now know where to look under the hood of a car to check the oil.
Speaking to WSB-TV Atlanta, senior Grace Wikle, a particularly bright student is especially proud that she can change a mean tire now .
“I take AP World, AP environmental science, AP language and then apart from that, five courses at the college,” Wikle said. When asked what she would have done if she had a flat tire prior to her training, she said: “(I’d) call somebody else, call my parents, whoever is on the side of the road. I was not prepared before today.”
Ready for adulting
While there are resources such as YouTube to learn DIY home skills, students admitted to Channel 2’s Brandt Petersen that they learned and focused better when being taught in real life.
Plumbers, mechanics, cooks, electricians and several other experts were invited to the school by Principal Billy Kirk to teach their areas of specialization to the kids.
“We’re trying to teach kids real-life examples. So when they graduate, not only are they college-ready, but they’re life ready,” Kirk said.
“I have two boys who go to this school. (They are) 18 and 17. I’m embarrassed to say if my kids got stuck in the rain today with a flat tire, they probably wouldn’t know how to fix it,” he added.
It doesn’t end at school
While this Georgia school and several others around the country are making solid efforts to prepare their students before sending them forth into the real world, the core education should be delivered at home.
In the past children on average, were more involved in household chores and maintenance works, often learning by watching adults from a young age. Some of the tasks would be their sole responsibilities and they would learn how to work together as a family.
Some have made the argument that today teens are ‘overworked’ and experience more stress than adults do, this in part may be leading to increased rates of anxiety and depression. However these stresses come from other sources like school work, bullying, social media, and so on.
But does this mean less chores for children and teens? THe short answer is no. The chances of your child suffering from anxiety or depression from chores, is probably very low. Teens need counseling and heart-to-heart conversations with people who understand the phase of life they are going through. They need people who would listen and give them a chance to share their troubles without feeling as though they’re being judged or reprimanded.
While a lot of schools have guidance counselors, parents and guardians need to pitch in and communicate better with their kids. Teens these days aren’t overworked as much as they are distracted.
They need more responsibility in the right places as a helpful outlet for all the energy they spend on activities that would either get them hurt or lead to depression. Most kids just want to be treated as adults, and what better way to achieve this than letting them handle so-called “adult stuff?”
Sending your kid to the grocery store and trusting them to come home and get things set up is a huge responsibility and believe it or not, they would appreciate being treated like grown-ups and find less time to be depressed.
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- ‘High school hosts ‘Adulting Day’ to teach students how to cook, clean and change a tire‘ Fox 8 Brittany Rall. Published January 24, 2020
- ‘Adulting Day’: Students learn the basics before they really need them’ WSB-TV. Published January 24, 2020