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10 skills your children can learn today that, selfishly, might be useful for you one day

We are all looking for ways to entertain our children – but why don’t we try something that might actually be useful for us one day. Why not teach our kids skills that we can use? Yes, this might be selfish – but it IS also insanely useful. We are still in quarantine in some locations across the globe, so lets start to get creative with these skills your kids can learn that can one day help you!

We have some ideas for you to try with YOUR kids, these are taken from Kids in Quarantine: 178 Ways to Stop Your Children From Driving You Crazy During a Global Pandemic.

On top of the 178 ideas, Kids in Quarantine contains several bonus lists, such including:

  • 10 super-long child-friendly books that will keep them busy for a few days,
  • 10 options for video-calling your friends and family,
  • Alongside the one we are featuring here in which the author Jamie Wilco gives ten suggestions for 10 skills your children can learn that, selfishly, might be useful for you one day.

So here you are – why not try some of these skills with the kids today? You can even print out a list of them and tick them off as you go along as well – just click on the square image at the end of the post.

  1. A language Sometime in the future (hopefully) you’ll be able to go on holiday again, and what better way to celebrate than having your kids be able to order you and your partner “una botella de vino” with their new Spanish skills.
    How to learn: The apps Duolingo, Drops and Memrise are a fun way to start.
  2. First aid This is something that everyone should have at least a basic knowledge of; you never know when you will run into trouble and only have your children to help.
    How to learn: The app First Aid by the British Red Cross will teach you everything you’ll need. Alternatively, you can learn on their website.
  3. Money management Putting a child’s pocket money and expenditure in a simple spreadsheet can teach them the basics of financial planning and remind them to not waste what they have – e.g. by showing that the cash that paid for those last few bags of sweets could have instead bought a new toy or book.
    How to learn: Dave Ramsey’s blog has got a great article on the subject called How to Teach Kids About Money. We also have resources on KiddyCharts too, including this article talking about great money saving activities, and how to talk to kids about money.

  4. Self defence I hate to remind you, but one day your children will be bigger than you, and who knows when they may need to protect you, themselves or their future families. Set them on the right path by getting them interested in self-defence at a young age. Jujitsu is a great start, but if you’re not into the belts and fancy outfits, then the self-defence discipline Krav Maga is all about protecting yourself in real-life situations, such as on public transport.
    How to learn: Learn the basic from home by watching Youtube tutorials, or ask your local martial arts teacher to teach your kids a few moves.
  5. Sewing and stitching Everyone needs to sew occasionally, whether you’re adjusting a school uniform, fixing a stuffed toy, or putting band patches on a jacket as part of a regrettable teenage phase.
    How to learn: Learn with Youtube channels such as 5-Minute Crafts.
  6. Meditation Ask pretty much any highly productive public figure what their daily routine is and at some point they’ll mention meditation. Try it as a family and it may bring some much-needed calm to the house.
    How to learn: see Common Sense Media for some ideas.

  7. Graphic design This is one for the teens. Knowing someone who has some basic knowledge of graphic design will forever come in useful, for if you ever need to make a poster, tweak a photo, or design something for your business. Photoshop offer a free month-long trial – enough time to become fairly good.
    How to learn: Go to the Adobe website to download the trial, and watch Youtube tutorials to learn. A free online alternative to Photoshop is GIMP.
  8. Reading music The ability to stroll up to a piano and knock out a tune will always be impressive.
    How to learn: The website Educational App Store has a list of child-friendly music apps.
  9. Gardening. If you can get your child interested in gardening, then you’ve got yourself a little apprentice for a few years. Plus, plucking carrots from the garden together has got to be more enjoyable than going to the supermarket..
    How to learn: Mix up the tedious tasks like weeding with some fun activities, like planting vegetable seeds or building a bug hotel. We have a rather lovely bug hunt for you too! There are more tips in this article on gardening with kids too.

  10. How to sleep properly It’s a strange thing to learn, but there is an art to it. Experiment with techniques for getting a better sleep – from buying a ‘wake up light’ that mimics the sunrise (Lumie is a leading brand, but there are cheaper alternatives), to banning all electronics for 90 minutes before bed to keep your melatonin levels in check . How to learn: There are many websites dedicated to the subject, such as Sleep Foundation.

Kids in Quarantine: 178 Ways to Stop Your Children From Driving You Crazy During a Global Pandemic, is available to buy on Amazon.

What do you think – is it worth getting the kids to try any of these? And if these ideas don’t work to give you a few moments peace – why not try the other 168 is Jamie’s book!

If you want to download the list as a printable, do click on the square image below as well.

If you STILL need more ideas for entertainment and skills your children can learn do check out some of these on the site as well.

More KiddyCharts activities to try

Here are some more ideas for you to try with the children.

Thanks so much for coming to see us, and don’t forget to sign up to our newsletter if you haven’t already done so.

Take care,


Helen is a mum to two, social media consultant, and website editor; and this site is (we think) the only Social Enterprise parenting magazine! Since giving up being a business analyst when juggling travel, work and kids proved too complicated, she founded KiddyCharts so she could be with her kids, and use those grey cells at the same time. KiddyCharts has reach of over 1.1million across social and the site. The blog works with big family brands (including travel) to help promote their services, as well as offering free resources to parents of kids under 10. It gives 51%+ profits to Reverence for Life, who fund a number of important initiatives in Africa, including bringing running water and basic equipment to a school in Tanzania. Helen has worked as a digital marketing consultant (IDM qualified) with various organisations, including Channel Mum, Truprint, Talk to Mums, and Micro Scooters. She loves to be creative in the brand campaigns she works on. Get in touch TODAY!

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