Just for You – July


We have a year-round schedule, so our school year has already started.  I know, hard to believe!

My oldest Ethan is in MIDDLE SCHOOL (!) and my girls are in elementary school.  James and I have been talking about what we want our children to know before they go to college.  As you think about your own family, I invite you to ask yourself three questions:

What life skills does your child need before leaving your home?

What books do they need to read?  

Where would you like them to travel?  

IMG_9746If you ask better questions in your family, you will get better results.  Time moves so quickly.  A simple plan for your child’s development can make a world of difference in his or her future success.

I suggest you take different stages like:

Elementary school

Middle school 

High school 

For each age range, make a list of what life skills your child needs to master, and what books they need to read.  As you are financially able, plan trips so your child can see that the world is more rich and diverse than the neighborhood in which you live.  These trips don’t have to be international.  You may just drive a few hours away.

Here’s a sample of a few things from our list.

Elementary School Life Skills:

  • Ride a bike
  • Sew a button
  • Do laundry, wash dishes, clean the bathroom
  • Order own food at restaurants
  • Play the piano

Elementary School Reading:  

  • Charlotte’s Web and Little Women in Spanish (my kids are in a Spanish immersion school)
  • New Testament

Middle School Life Skills:

  • Grocery shopping and cooking 5 meals 
  • Giving speeches
  • Service project like Sonshine Club (our elementary school afterschool club)
  • Managing homework without help

IMG_9742Middle School Reading:  

  • Kisses from Katie
  • Richest Man in Babylon
  • The Hiding Place
  • How to Win Friends and Influence People
  • Holy Bible 

High School Life Skills: 

  • Learn how to drive/get driver’s license
  • Play guitar & piano
  • Bilingual education
  • Change a tire

High School Reading:  

  • How to Read the Bible for All It’s Worth
  • Do Hard Things
  • The Cross and the Switchblade
  • Passion and Purity 
  • The Millionaire Next Door

Another must will be to attend Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University in high school.

These lists are certainly not exhaustive, but they are meant to provide direction and purpose.  It’s our job as parents to prepare our children for life.

It’s not the school’s job. 

It’s not the youth pastor’s job. 

It’s our job – and joy – as parents to help our children plan and prepare wisely for the future.

So, go ahead…get started and write down some of your ideas.

What do you want your child to know before they graduate from your home?


Arlene Pellicane