Teaching Our Children Basic Life Skills

Florida betony tubers taste like radishes without the sting, and are found in other southern states as well as Florida.

Last week as I was recovering from a nasty flu, our children were outside playing and noticed a patch of Florida Betony growing across the lane.  They did the “natural” thing: got buckets and spades, and started digging.  Finding many ripe tubers, they brought them in and washed them thoroughly to use in salads.  The tasty tubers are crunchy like a radish, but without the sting, making a delicious addition to vegetable salads.

Of course this is NOT the “natural” thing for most children in our day.  We have so thoroughly lost the basic life skills that previous generations took for granted.  Our generation knows a lot about high tech stuff, but little about simple basics.  Today’s children are knowledgeable about video games, iPods, and social networking, but have little knowledge or skills necessary to be self-reliant, if they ever need to be.

There are numerous possibilities that could plunge us into a life with no electricity or electronics, temporarily or long-term.  An electromagnetic pulse (EMP), produced by either  an intense solar storm predicted by NASA or by an act of war or terrorism against our country, could wipe out the electrical grid we depend on so much.  Supervolcanoes, earthquakes, and other natural and man-made disasters are not out of the question.  Of course there are many varying opinions about the possibilities, and none of us enjoy doomsday prophecies.  But with the electrical system being as fragile as it is, wouldn’t it be wise to understand life without it?  If it collapses, so does transportation, communication, and food production and delivery.

We want our children to know how to think, work, and survive.  The more we learn the more we realize there is to learn; how ignorant our generation has become.  So if you visit us on a typical day in our home educating family, you are more likely to find us out digging in the ground than burying our heads in textbooks!  🙂

Children and Chores                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         Who wants you and your children to be prepared…


2 thoughts on “Teaching Our Children Basic Life Skills

  1. A few years ago our family visited a working homestead community. As we walked through gardens and the grain mill and demonstrations of woodworking and quilting and basket weaving and pottery we kept saying to ourselves…”We can’t do anything.” Do I value reading and literature? Yes. Do I value art and music study? Yes. Do I want my children to have an understanding of history and economics and how the world works? Yes. But I also want them to know how to make butter and bread to put it on, how to sew a shirt and how to provide their families with clean drinking water. The first set of skills is far easier to obtain.


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