By Lucy Wyndham
Today’s children spend nearly five to seven hours a day in front of a screen. While they are often more tech-savvy than even their own parents, this comes at the cost of physically interacting with objects as well as creating, designing and developing crucial hand-eye coordination skills. Due to the economic and social landscape in which this generation will have to spend most of their lives, learning how to DIY their own homes, clothes and more will certainly benefit them in the future, but there are even compounding effects on their growing minds in the present.
Raising Self-Sufficient Individuals
Education in the New York City area, at its core, is about giving children the tools they need to grow into self-confident and self-sufficient adults. In fact, more and more teachers and educators are realizing the benefits of learning life skills, with 97% of teachers, 94% of employers and even 88% of young people reporting that they’re now more important than academic qualifications. Teaching and encouraging children to learn with their own hands, to create and to engage in activities outside of schoolwork not only encourages them to develop their own creativity and personality but also to learn practical life skills that will carry them into adulthood and help them in their professional careers. Encouraging a passion and interest in interior design or helping them learn how to create their own clothing can easily translate into transferable skills they’ll most definitely be able to use later in life, both personally and professionally.
Increasing Academic Performance
Teaching a child how to cultivate their own food or sew their own clothes is n’t just about helping them become self-sufficient individuals (even though that’s one of the biggest perks!) For example, one study showed that children who participated in gardening projects scored higher in science achievement than those who did not. These types of DIY projects are important in creating well-rounded children who are able to develop other types of problem-solving and analytical skills. The beauty of these types of modern-day initiatives is that they can easily be integrated with the behavior of the generation they ’re targeting. DIY Co, for example, is a tech company that has created the online Platform JAM in order to teach kids how to DIY skills that they are not taught in school. The idea behind this initiative is to help parents optimize their child’s screen time while also helping them learn practical life skills.
Setting Kids Up for Success
If the past is any indicator of the future, then it comes as no surprise that the current workforce was not properly taught the skills needed to succeed in the current job market. When cultivating academic curriculum in combination with at-home teachings, it’s important to keep in mind the cultural and economic landscape in which your child will have to live in once they reach adulthood. Ensuring that they’re both allowed and encouraged to participate in DIY projects that unleash their creativity and unlock certain skills is a crucial way to set them up for success in the future.