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40 Things Kids Should Learn Or Possess Before They Leave Their Parents' Home

Updated on September 4, 2013
Kristine Manley profile image

Kris Manley is a blogger, author, and speaker. She's a guest on radio in the U.S., Canada, and overseas, as well as a guest on network TV.


Most children can't wait to get out on their own, but if I were to take a parenting poll most parents get phone calls from the "free birds" who just left the nest on basic homemaking, doing laundry, how long does the chicken or turkey stay in the oven, and so on - am I right? Of course I am. Before I ask anything I first look it up on the Internet. I must admit there are a few things that I wished I had learned before getting my own place. I wish I knew to keep basic spices, foods, or staples in my pantry, per Mom, as well as have certain financial accounts in place. Even though it's exciting for children, or should I say young adults, to leave their parents' home to get a place of their own, most parents assist the kids in stocking their new place with towels, wash clothes, sheets, and so on. Parents provide tips, do's and don'ts before the kids leave and wonder if "Abby" or "Jonathan" has everything he or she needs. Parents ask themselves if certain situations arise will the young adults know what to do - in other words concern for kids' welfare is always ingrained in parents.

What I've done is compiled a list of what I suggest children should learn or posses before they leave their parents' home and get a place of their own. Items on this list will hopefully boost the confidence of a young person who is leaving their parents' house. Knowing how to do certain things or have certain items that will make some things in life go a lot smoother is a big help. The things on this list are a good start and hopefully will help someone's child / young adult before they leave their parents' nest.

  1. Make a basic pie crust (see how-to link below)
  2. How to clean fish (eating is a must)
  3. Create a hard copy list of cell phone numbers (suppose you lose your cell phone)
  4. Replace a shower head
  5. Couponing and making a grocery list
  6. Own a book on Herbs
  7. Bake bread
  8. Sort laundry and use an outside laundry mat
  9. Change a tire
  10. Know that it's Ok to take public transportation
  11. Tie different kinds of knots
  12. Keep a list of emergency services in their area, i.e., Fire Dept., Police, Power Company, Gas Company, Electric Company, etc.
  13. Read food labels
  14. Have a Carbon Monoxide Detector
  15. Put together or buy a First Aid Kit
  16. Always keep two flashlights at home - preferably LED and Wind-up type
  17. Always have a fire extinguisher at home and post on the refrigerator text and graphical directions on using it
  18. Own a set of jumper cables
  19. Create a budget
  20. Know how to change their car's air filter
  21. Know how to swim and tread water
  22. How to use a compass (good for the outdoors person)
  23. Take a how-to class at a home improvement store
  24. How to start a fire using wood and lint from their clothes dryer
  25. How to cut up and clean a chicken (eating is a must)
  26. Get a Smoke Detector and know how to change the batteries in it
  27. Have a Roth IRA
  28. It's good to have a pet so a person will know how to take care of a living thing other than themselves (it's good to start with a small fish tank)
  29. Have a list of remedies that will keep insects away, e.g., cinnamon keeps ants away, boric acid will kill any insect, dryer sheets in your pocket will keep mosquitoes away
  30. Know how to type (not peck)
  31. Take a CPR class and learn the Heimlich Maneuver
  32. Take a map reading class (good for the outdoors person)
  33. Keep a sewing kit at home
  34. Keep cloves of Garlic at home (see the benefits of Garlic below)
  35. Know the importance of Peroxide (see the uses of Peroxide below)
  36. Keep a list of How-to websites
  37. Take a First Aid Class
  38. Keep at least two umbrellas - one for home and one for the car
  39. Keep a well stocked tool kit at home
  40. Have an alarm system

Oops, one more. It may be last, but certainly not least - make sure Mom and Dad or a friend you trust has a key to your new place (for emergencies).


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    • Kristine Manley profile image

      Donna Kristine 6 years ago from Atlanta, GA

      lavender3957, thank you.

    • profile image

      lavender3957 6 years ago

      Alot of good tips and advice. Thanks for sharing. I sent this along to my children who are already moved out. This will certainly help them to get on their feet in alot of good ways. Very well done.

    • profile image

      lavender3957 6 years ago

      Wonderful hub, I sent this along to my three sons who are already moved out. I am sure that they will find this very useful. Thanks for sharing. ALot of good advice and tips.

    • Kristine Manley profile image

      Donna Kristine 6 years ago from Atlanta, GA

      YEAH! Right, kingphilipIV - LOL!

    • kingphilipIV profile image

      Ramphil Basco 6 years ago from Iloilo, Philippines

      For me, I don't want to leave my parents.. I really love them so much.. :) So I don't have any reason to do those things.

    • Danette Watt profile image

      Danette Watt 6 years ago from Illinois

      there are many skills kids should know, including, as you mention, knowing how to do their own laundry and cook some basic meals.

    • Kristine Manley profile image

      Donna Kristine 6 years ago from Atlanta, GA

      Hi DeBorrah, thanks.

    • DeBorrah K. Ogans profile image

      DeBorrah K Ogans 6 years ago

      Kristine Manley, How interesting! Great suggestions! I wonder if this why some children never want to leave the comforts of home? lol! Thank You for sharing, Peace & Blessings!

    • Kristine Manley profile image

      Donna Kristine 6 years ago from Atlanta, GA

      pstraubie48, I agree and you're welcome!

    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 6 years ago from sunny Florida

      Yeah...for sure...we young at heart need these 20 things also!!!! It is skills are soooo important....thanks for sharing this!!!

    • Kristine Manley profile image

      Donna Kristine 6 years ago from Atlanta, GA

      Hi jenn-zee, I agree with you when it comes to looking up things, that's why I mentioned it in the article. I guess I'm quite unusual because some of these things I do or have done for myself.

    • ajaodegaard profile image

      ajaodegaard 6 years ago

      Thanks for the article! I know many of the things on the list, but like @chiefmomofficer those car ones are something I usually depend on others for. Voted up.

    • jenn-zee profile image

      jenn-zee 6 years ago from Toronto, Ontario

      An interesting list. :-) About half of it I still cannot or won't do as a grown adult with two kids... but obviously it's a good start for generating ideas.

      The list is preparing your child to live a fairly "standard" life with kids and a dog in suburbia, I guess. Modify as appropriate if you are into something else (e.g. I have zero umbrellas, but really good raingear... and no car either...)

      I think I personally would place more emphasis on knowing how to look up things you need, be it pie crust recipes or info on herbs (though it doesn't hurt to have a few skills already).

    • Kristine Manley profile image

      Donna Kristine 6 years ago from Atlanta, GA

      Hi chiefmomofficer, I have AAA too.

    • Kristine Manley profile image

      Donna Kristine 6 years ago from Atlanta, GA

      Hi prektjr.dc, I forgot about the checkbook balancing - thanks.

    • chiefmomofficer profile image

      chiefmomofficer 6 years ago from Massachusetts

      I must admit there are a few things on this list that I don't know how to do (mainly the car related ones - thank goodness for AAA) and I'm now a mom with kids of my own. Great advice for parents like me who are in the process of shaping young lives :) thanks for sharing!

    • prektjr.dc profile image

      Debbie Carey 6 years ago from Riverton, KS, USA

      Very good! My son recently moved out and I did everything possible to make sure he was prepared as well as having his home prepared. One thing I would add is to learn how to balance a checkbook! Good hub! Voted up and useful!


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