Just because you’re raising 21st century kids doesn’t mean they don’t need to know some old-fashioned skills! Vintage skills like sewing and gardening are still applicable today, and are highly useful.
They could even be used be your kids to earn money when they’re grown up! To make sure your kids aren’t missing out on any useful vintage skills, take a look at these Old-Fashioned Skills Modern Kids Need to Learn!
Old-Fashioned Skills Modern Kids Need to Learn
Even if you expect that your children will spend their whole lives in the suburbs/cities, it’s still worthwhile to teach them these skills. Mainly because these are useful life skills that can make their lives easier, save them money, keep their homes clean, or even keep them safe.
On top of that, teaching your kids old-fashioned skills live sewing, cooking, and homemaking also teaches them self-reliance, builds confidence, and shows them that DIY methods are just as valid as commercial ones. And of course, if there’s ever some sort of huge disaster or destructive event, your kids will be able to put these old-fashioned skills to use as survival skills.
You never see the people in zombie apocalypse movies not knowing how to cook a basic meal over a campfire! While hopefully your kids will never have to use their skills for something like that, it doesn’t hurt to make sure they’re prepared. So here are the old-fashioned skills I think your modern kids should learn.
Cooking had to be #1 on my list of old-fashioned skills to teach your kids because it’s vitally important. Not to mention, I have a multitude of instant pot, air fryer, and recipes on here. If kids learn nothing else on this list by the time they go off to college, make sure they learn how to cook. And when I say how to cook, I don’t mean how to add water to a box mix.
I mean how to quarter a whole chicken, how to slice and dice veggies, how to make mashed potatoes from real potatoes, how to bake bread from scratch, etc. Scratch cooking saves money, is healthier, and is the kind of cooking they’d likely have to do if there was a major emergency. Make sure to show them how to operate different cooking devices like a gas grill, a charcoal grill, a gas stove, an electric stove, a slow cooker, a pressure cooker, and so on.
If any major disaster ever was to happen, camping would probably become a very necessary skill. You kids don’t need to become outdoors enthusiasts or join the Boy/Girl Scouts, but they should know how to pitch a tent, start a fire, identify animal prints (especially the prints of large predators), find clean water, and recognize harmful plants.
Sewing is one of the most useful old-fashioned skills you can teach your kids! After all, why get rid of a perfectly good jacket if it just has a little tear. That’s being wasteful. Along with teaching your kids how to mend clothes, they’d also benefit a lot from learning how to sew completely new things.
And don’t just show them how to sew clothes, also show them how to make toys, decor, pet toys, etc. Those could be the skills they use to build a nice little side hustle to help pay for college, or to bring in more money when they’re adults.
Everyone should know the basics of gardening! Not only does knowing how to garden allow your kids to grow food to eat, but it will also ensure they’ll know how to care for plants and flowers and make their future homes look beautiful! You might want to take your kids to a botanical garden, or even to an orchard or functioning farm, so they get a fuller idea of all that gardening can be.
If you’re really into prepping or outdoor survival, you may be able to introduce your kids to fishing/hunting personally. Just make sure not to traumatize them with hunting, especially if they’re avid animal lovers.
But if you’re not so keen on fishing or hunting, it’s okay to introduce your kids to the idea without any actual practice. A hunting/fishing video game or video series will probably be enough. And of course, you can always show your kids how to find non-animal food in the wild by showing them how to gather berries, nuts, roots, etc.
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It may not be a deer, apparently they are hiding. However, it’s his first kill! They aren’t giving up. Still waiting for that deer to come out of hiding! This boys on top of the world! #nautresdinnerable #homeschoolhuntingtrip #momofteenboy #fathersonhuntingtrip2016 #memories #squirrelhunting #whereisbambihiding #hunterlife #hunting #Thanksgiving2016
6. Car Care + Repair
Teaching your kids car repair isn’t as easy as it was back in the day when cars were simpler. Now cars have touch screens, GPS, collision sensors, and other high-tech stuff that most drivers only barely understand, let alone know how to find and fix.
So while it’s unlikely your kids will be able to do 100% of their car repairs on their own in the future, they should still know how to do basic car care/repair things like change oil, change a tire, change windshield wipers, and other simple tasks.
7. Animal Care
Animal care is an old-fashioned skill that many adults don’t know (outside of basic pet care), but tend to wind up researching at one point or another. After all, the idea of having chickens with fresh eggs, or goats with fresh milk can be highly appealing.
Teaching your kids how to care for a small pet like a fish or hamster is a great first step in teaching this, and can be followed with a larger pet like a cat or dog. But you’ll definitely want to see about introducing your kids to how to care for farm animals like cows, sheep, chickens, etc. If you can, visit a farm. If you can’t, show them instructional videos so they realize how complex animal care can be.
I titled this category “homemaking” because it includes all the various skills required to turn a house into a comfortable, clean home. That includes things like doing laundry, organizing, cleaning (including deep cleaning tasks, like cleaning the oven), and simple home maintenance (what to do when a bathtub is draining slowly, for example).
9. DIY Building
Everyone should know how to build things! But I don’t mean how to build huge things like a house or bridge (though those would be cool skills to have). I mean how to build a table or chair, or even how to hot glue together a simple wreath.
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My teen has his own lawn mowing business and this is what he’s doing in his spare time! He’s building a trash bag holder to take when he goes camping with his @traillife troop! I’d much rather this than TV and video games!!! #traillifetroop122 #teen #teenagers #homeschool #homeschoolteens #lifeskills #skilltrekker #lifelearner #awefilledhomemaker #awefilledveteranswife @c.prater @thememeinator2000
Most kids get the gist of DIY building through little simple kids’ crafts with paper plates, craft sticks, etc. But not every kid’s parents take it one step further and show them how to make bigger or more useful things. Show your kids how to use a hammer, nails, screwdriver, screws, saw, hot glue gun, Mod Podge, etc.
Get them familiar with your local home improvement store and what all the different things in it can do. Maybe get a light kit and build a lamp from scratch, or get some wood and make a bird house. Who knows, this introduction to building may lead to your kids to becoming architects, or to them designing and selling their own furniture or other products!
10. Home Improvement
Last but not least on this list of old-fashioned skills is home improvement. Home improvement skills are vitally important to independent living, and can be a big money saver. From learning how to do something as simple as change out kitchen cabinet hardware, to more complex things like installing a new sink or faucet, having your kids help with home improvement tasks now will make it easier for them to tackle their own home improvement projects in the future.
And if they wind up being skilled enough to do some projects completely on their own, they can save money in the future by not having to hire professionals!
So as you can see, you and your kids can only benefit from practicing these 10 old-fashioned skills. Not only will these skills make your kids more self-reliant and save them money, but they could also be the skills that make the basis of their future careers!
But don’t worry too much about all that right now. Just have fun introducing your kids to these various ideas. Who knows, you may learn something new along the way, too! To make sure you don’t forget anything on this list when planning your educational experiences, here is a handy printable old-fashioned skills checklist!
How many of these old-fashioned skills do your kids already know?