Documenting Life Skills ~ Not Back to School Blog Hop

Documenting Life Skills.png

Life skills. We have talked about why pay attention to life skills, how to be intentional, what life skills look like, and today we are going to chat a bit about documenting.

Once you have a list made, if you are list kind of person, I think there are a couple of ways you could document what your children learn. Just as there are many ways to document which lessons have been completed in the core curriculum, there are many ways here, also.

  • daily journal
  • simple entry in lesson plan book
  • check list
  • photo journal
  • student-kept journal
  • binder with notes, pictures, and/or lists
  • even scraps of paper with jotted notes on them (just grab a folder to keep them all in; maybe a ziplock baggie would work, too)

These are a few ideas off the top of my head.

Planner cover

This is the planner I use.

For me, well, I like to be organized but not to be hyper-diligent about it. I like to know what is happening and have a routine for our lessons. I note things we cover, as we cover them. I am approaching life skills the same way. I have a column in our weekly plan page that is going to be for a simple entry each time I think of or notice life skills being practiced or learned.

When I have a place for documenting it, I am more diligent about noticing it and being intentional about focusing on it.

When Brenna was talking to use the other day about her family’s Real Life University, she said they have a binder for each child. In it is the list of skills by age that they want their children to learn and practice. As each one is learned, they check it off. As they practice it, they also note it. In addition, there are notes that Brenna and her husband write their children about things they want them to know and remember. There are hand-written cards added. There might be pictures added. This becomes a scrapbook of learning through the years. When their children are adults, they have a beautiful record of learning that has happened over years.

You could go and plan out when you want to focus on each skill but I think that might move the learning from true life skills into curriculum. True life skills, to me, happen in a natural context. They learn to paint because you need to paint a bedroom. They learn to change the oil because they are old enough and it needs to be done. They learn to assist someone with a filing task because they are around when it happens. They learn to save because you are teaching them through the years with their allowance. They learn to budget because you have given them money to use as they desire but you are not covering their choices when they want to go to the movies but have spent all their money on books.

All of this is discussion that happens naturally and learning that happens organically through the days of living and growing and maturing. This is why I think the notes or journals are perhaps the most effective way for most of us to teach life skills. It is still intentional – we are thinking about what they need to learn as we are doing tasks and asking them to come alongside us as we do them or holding the discussion about consequences when a choice has to be made. And when it comes to personal/interpersonal skills, MUCH of the learning is done through discussion.

So what way will work for you? It may take a bit of time to figure it out. You may have to try a few different ideas. If you are already documenting life skills, I would love to know what you do.

Come back tomorrow for the final day of this series and see a round-up of links that may be of help to you as you embark on intentionally teaching life skills to your children.

Lori, At Home.


Visit the Homeschool Review Crew to read about the ideas, tips, and encouragement you will find from all the other bloggers who are participating in this week’s NOT Back to School Blog Hop. Below are some links to their blogs but if you want their post from today, click on the image above to get the link up for today.

CREW @ Homeschool Review Crew – 2019 Annual Not Back to School Homeschool Blog Hop

Chareen @ Every Bed of Roses – ABC of Homeschooling

Dawn @ Schoolin’ Swag – Adding Fun to Your Homeschool Day

Erin @ For Him and My Family – Large Family Homeschooling

Lori @ At Home Where Life Happens – Learning Life Skills

Monique @ Mountain of Grace Homeschooling – Homeschooling the High School Years

Monique D. @ Early Learning Mom – Homeschooling With Autism

Yvie @ Homeschool On the Range – 5 Days of Upper Grades Homeschooling

Abby @ Making Room 4 One More – Time Management for Homeschool Moms

Amanda @ Hopkins Homeschool – 5 Days of Homeschool Questions

Amy @ the WRITE Balance – Year-Round Schooling

Annette @ A Net in Time – Homeschooling.

Betty @ Lets Get Real – Homeschooling High School

Cassandra @ My Blessed Mess – Eclectic Homeschooling

Kimberley @ Vintage Blue Suitcase – Roadschooling with a Teenager

Yvonne @ The Life We Build – 5 Days of Relaxed Homeschooling

Destiny @ Some Call It Destiny – Encouragement for the Homeschooling Mom

Karen @ Tots and Me…Growing Up Together –  A Peek into Our Homeschool

Cassie D @ Deputie Tribe – Homeschooling 6 Taking Care of YOU

Kristen Heider @ A Mom’s Quest to Teach Theme: A Quest for a Great Homeschool Year

Patti Pierce – Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy – My Favorite Homeschooling Things

Wendy @ Life on Chickadee Lane – 5 Days of Nature Study

Jacquelin @ A Stable Beginning – Homeschooling my final 4 

Christine @ Life’s Special Necessities – Yes! You Can Homeschool Your Special Needs Child

Sally M – Tell the Next Generation – Tips for Homeschooling Struggling Learners

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4 thoughts on “Documenting Life Skills ~ Not Back to School Blog Hop

  1. Kristen August 16, 2019 at 10:55 pm Reply

    This is giving me something to think about…our teen will be taking over some responsibilities around the house and we need to have a way to document that…good food for thought.

    • 3gigglygirlsathome August 17, 2019 at 11:21 am Reply

      I love hearing that you will be having your teen step up. They certainly need to do that, don’t they?

  2. Annette Vellenga (@athomepets) August 18, 2019 at 8:37 pm Reply

    I honestly never thought about documenting life skills… the idea completely surprised me! 🙂 I like the thought of keeping a journal but I know myself well enough to know I’d never keep it up.:(

    • 3gigglygirlsathome August 18, 2019 at 9:28 pm Reply

      That is what I have thought a few times but I also like the idea of a bit of a record to look over.

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