Your teen is at an age where they probably feel ready to take on the world. This is a great age for introducing them to activities that will expand their world and help them to apply what they are already learning in school. The possibilities are endless. Here are some supplementary activities that you as a parent can do to encourage your child to continue to grow in their education.
Meal Planning and Grocery Shopping
Meal planning and grocery shopping go hand-in-hand and are basic chores that can teach your teen skills that go far beyond basic ones. There are many facets involved in these two simple chores. Meal planning helps teach your teen how to plan for different sized groups, organize weekly family meals, and find the items in the grocery store and purchasing them within a budge. These two activities have many benefits. Meal planning and grocery shopping will help your teen see the importance of math, reading and organizational skills, all within a short period of time. It may become something that they decide they want to help with frequently.
Budgeting with Parents
Budgeting is something best learned while you are relatively young. The preferable time to teach your kids about money management is when they are still living at home. Allow your child to look at your family finances. Most children are trustworthy with the info and can learn valuable lessons about budgeting while watching you manage your household. Involve your teen so that they can see why you make the decisions you do and how you solve problems when necessary. It is important that your teen has their own bank account, learn how to manage their account and know where their money is going, even from a young age.
Run Errands for the Family
Once your teen gets older and earns the privilege of driving you can allow them to start running errands for the family. This helps them to feel a sense of accomplishment and gives them more responsibility. They can go to the grocery store, the bank, pick up the dry cleaning, take a younger sibling to ball practice, pick up a package from the post office. The list of errands becomes endless when you are an adult and allowing your teen to get a little practice while they are young will help them and help you too.
Encourage your teen to brainstorm and come up with an idea for their own home business. Help them if they need some help, but it would be better if they can come up with the idea, figure out how to start it and run it on their own. Many adults are becoming an entrepreneur and are working for themselves rather than for someone else. Whether your child continues with a home business, or becomes an employee, managing a home business as a young person will make the financial principles floating around in their heads become more concrete. When you have to balance books, suddenly math becomes a reality and your teen will realize exactly why they are putting in long hours to learn these concepts. As stated in an earlier post regarding your middle schooler, teens will reap the same benefits from owning their own business.
Volunteering is a great experience for any child of all ages. In the teen years, volunteering can serve many purposes, including exploring areas of possible future career interests. Whether your child wants to become a cook or a veterinarian, there is an opportunity for them to volunteer somewhere that sparks passion inside them.
Encourage your child to volunteer in a few different places throughout their teen years. This will give them a taste of what the working world is like and will help them choose a place of employment when they are older. Volunteering will have exposed them to many different workplace atmospheres. Your teen may even land their first job because someone they volunteered for didn’t want to let them go when they were ready to look for employment.
Teens have the world at their fingertips. Encourage your teen to look beyond his or her immediate situation and into the future. By incorporating these everyday activities into your child’s life, they will expand their education and become a leader in tomorrow’s world.