College: it's happening to you. It's not easy to say goodbye to your child when he or she goes off to school for the first time, especially if you aren't sure if they are truly able to care for themselves. However, you can help your son or daughter to prepare for college life with some simple tips and a few tricks that you can put up your sleeve so he or she can be confident in their abilities.
First of all, most college students aren't going to be able to cook for themselves. If you've taught your child to cook, that's excellent, and if he or she is in a student apartment with a kitchen, it's an important asset to have. At the same time, many college students are in dorm rooms without a real kitchen, limited to hot plates and microwaves. That doesn't mean to teach your child to eat fast food constantly the way that many assume is necessary in college life. Rather, teach them to eat healthy foods that can be prepared on the hot plate or in the microwave. There are often ways to alter a recipe to make it microwave friendly, and you can help your student stock up on low-sodium canned goods that can be heated on the hot plate.
Another skill that is important when it comes to sending your child off to live the college life is that of washing clothes. Young men especially are often lacking such basic knowledge, and it's important to make sure that he knows the difference between washing ‘whites’ like towels and underwear versus washing delicates. It may also be wise to let your son or daughter know that you can't toss everything in the dryer. Also address the issue of dry cleaning and teach your children to look at tags for care information.
That leads to another important piece of information that can come in handy as your student enters the college life - ironing. It's probably true of a majority of kids who are used to their parents washing and ironing their clothes for them that they don't know anything about how to care for their clothes, dropping them on the floor or the bed in a pile to be dealt with later by someone else. What that means is, in order to be dressed appropriately in the real world of college, it's important to know how to remove wrinkles caused by washing and drying clothes.
While these may seem like the most basic of life skills, they are the pieces of knowledge that are important to the success of a student fresh out of high school leaving home to commence their journey into college life. If you can provide the basis of knowledge of these skills, you can rest assured that your son or daughter can be self-sufficient even when you are not around.
Sandy Baker is a freelance writer and published author. She also is a feature blogger at College and University Blog , where you can find more information on college preparations, student loans and more. This top online college blog explores everything about college life and provides a daily dose of the real life of the college student.