7 Educational skills to teach your child

Teaching children life-skills

Whilst many parents are spending valuable time at home with their children, why not try to teach them those all-important life skills.


Life skills will benefit children later in life, so it could be useful to implement these early on.


They will teach your child valuable qualities, including being independent, taking care of themselves and learning.


According to Ellen Galinsky’s Mind in the Making there are 7 important life skills:



  1. Focus & Self-Control


  • Children pick up habits and routine from a young age. So why not teach them how to focus and have self-control.
  • Focus is to do with being alert and devoting attention to one task at a time. You can help to improve your child’s focus by dedicating time for them to complete their work. This means they can use this amount of time to concentrate on what needs to be completed in that timeframe.
  • Self-control is about willpower and being aware of your own actions.
  • Ways to practice this can be teaching children to avoid temptation, for example limiting time on electronic devices like tablets or watching television. This will teach children that these are a privilege.


  1. Perspective-talking


  • This is about encouraging children to think from different viewpoints. By considering multiple perspectives asides from their own, they can gain an all-round view.
  • You can try instigating this by asking about the character’s in a book they are reading. Ask your child: what made the character do that? What made them feel the way they are feeling?
  • This will develop critical thinking, as well as empathy towards others.


  1. Communication


  • Children need regular communication in order to develop social skills and form healthy relationships in life.
  • Asking your child anything, about how they are, or how their day was, will improve their communication and build upon their social skills.
  • It will also help them to express themselves better and improve their development.



  1. Making connections


  • Making connections means recognising the connections and patterns in everyday life. It is making associations between certain things, like thought processes or ideas.
  • You can encourage children to make connections by asking them what they think they should wear in rainy weather, for example. Children should make the connection between wearing a coat in order to keep dry as a result of the rain.


  1. Critical thinking


  • Critical thinking is making decisions based on judgements. It is an important skill which your child will use throughout their life.
  • Try asking your child open-ended questions, like “What do you think?” or “How do you feel about it?” This will encourage them to justify their though process.
  • This will develop children’s decision making and forming judgements.


  1. Taking on challenges


  • This teaches your child that it is okay to make mistakes. By taking on challenges, children can grow and try new things.
  • This could be trying something new around the house, like gardening or helping you cook.
  • Children will learn to be open minded and diligent.


  1. Self-directed, engaged learning


  • It is important for children to enjoy learning. They won’t like every subject or task that they do, but you can help them to find what they enjoy.
  • Encourage their love of learning by going through work with your child, as well as trying to limit time spent on electronic devices. This can be replaced with reading or playing educational games.