High School Homeschool

Life Skills for High Schoolers

Outside of academics, there are some very important life skills for high schoolers to learn. By the time our students are in high school or are preparing to finish high school, they need to be able to accomplish these on their own. These skills will be important for them as they transition from school to independent living.
Life Skills for High Schoolers |Hip Homeschool Moms

In our homeschool, I put a large emphasis on life skills from an early age. This starts in the form of chores–things as simple as putting their dirty clothes in the basket or clearing their places at dinner. As the children get older, the chores get more complex.

When kids reach high school age, they need to begin preparing (if they haven’t started already) for life out on their own someday. They will need to know how to run the washer/dryer/dishwasher, use a hammer and screwdriver, mow the lawn, and so much more. The high school years are a great time to use an elective (or two) to incorporate life skills not only into high school credit, but into their lives.

Life Skills for High Schoolers

While I am sure there are more things than I will list here (please feel free to share any you think of in the comments), I have compiled a list of some major life skills to be sure and teach your high schoolers before they have to head out on their own!

  • laundry from start to finish (gathering, sorting, soaps, things to hang, use of washer/dryer, ironing)
  • dishes (including use of the dishwasher – along with the proper soap)
  • painting – Paying to have everything done in a home or apartment can be costly. This is one skill that will save tons of money down the road!
  • use of basic tools – things like hammers, drills, screw drivers, and saws
  • basic organizational skills (from sorting silverware and dishes to organizing drawers and closets)
  • meal planning
  • cooking (boiling water, using the oven and stove, reading and following a basic recipe)
  • grocery shopping (list making, money saving tips such as couponing and price checking)
  • outdoor chores (lawn mowing, shoveling, raking, care of siding, weeding, bush trimming)
  • seasonal chores/maintenance (changing batteries, checking light bulbs, cleaning around and under furniture, washing windows, checking smoke alarm)
  • bathroom cleaning – including the proper cleaners to use for things like the toilet and tub
  • money management – you can begin working with Money Sense Skills with younger children, and then delve deeper into Money Management for Teens. Things like opening and managing a checking account, saving for a car (and buying one), and budgeting all fall into this category.
  • career exploration – Finding careers that suit them is an important step toward adulthood. This would entail guiding them through a process of figuring out what they are good at and what they enjoy to help them better choose a career path that is right for them.

With my children, I begin with basics life skills when they are young and then work up to more complex tasks and responsibilities. We have included things like money management (financial literacy), auto maintenance including driver’s education, cooking/shopping/meal planning, and career exploration as middle or high school electives.

What life skills do you teach your homeschoolers? Are there life skills you’d like to see more about here at Hip Homeschool Moms? Please leave a comment to let us know!

About the author

Heidi

Heidi lives in upstate New York where the winters are long & cold, but where she truly appreciates the lack of extreme weather such as tsunamis and hurricanes! Her house is filled up with her loving husband of 17 years, 3 busy children, & 2 dogs (Muffin & Oscar). Homeschooling started out as a trial run with a child beginning 2nd grade, & almost 9 years later has become a lifestyle which brings great joy. You can often find her behind her camera, or working something out in Photoshop. With 3 children homeschooling multiple ages is the norm in their house. You can find her writing at on her own blog, Starts At Eight where she often focuses on homeschooling high school, elementary unit studies, and books/reading.

4 Comments

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  • “use of basic tools” — This one really caught my eye. I’m trying to get my youngest son to start ‘helping’ out around the backyard. Right now its fun, and we are learning. However, I remember my brother when he was 14 or so refused to learn how to weedwack. Definitely best to start early.

  • I believe that nutrition and healthy lifestyle choices are part of the basic life skills I teach my children. Exercise and related activities are learned habits that extend well past childhood. We discuss the benefits of eating healthy foods and staying fit as part of our overall wellness-not a separate component- as we all know how lack thereof can adversely affect one’s ability to function let alone enjoy life! And-Thank you for your food for thought!

  • My daughter has been scooping cat boxes for a few years & taking the recycling out. She just learned how to use the riding lawn mower too!

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