I’ve got about two and a half years before my teen is ready to fly the coup and go off to college. She is a sophomore and is SO ready to go now. She’s at that age that she is so independent and chafes at the bit with restrictions. But, before I let her go, I need to know she will be ok on her own away from home. Here is a list of life skills your teen needs before going to college:
1 – Basic Life Skills: Your teen needs to know how to do laundry. They need to be able to grocery shop and be able to make a quick meal. Most college campuses have dorms with kitchens. So make sure they can cook. Be able to catch a bus if they don’t have their car with them. without going into debt. The need for money management is paramount. I went to college and within six months I was in debt and sending out applications to get a job to pay my bills.
2 – Money Management: They need to be comfortable to go shopping without going into debt. The need for money management is paramount. I went to college and within six months I was in debt and sending out applications to get a job to pay my bills.
3 – Time Management: You’re not going to be there to make sure they’re up to go to classes. They need to be able to handle getting projects done and not have to pull all-nighters if they can avoid it. Although, we do know all-nighters and college classes go hand in hand. But, they need to be smart about WHEN they have to pull those.
4 – Self-Discipline: They are away from home for the first time. No curfew and parents at the door looking at their watches? Let’s be honest. The first year is going to be the hardest. We can only try to prepare them to accept the consequences if they don’t practice self-discipline.
5 – Emotional Coping Skills: This is going to be hard. In the end, no matter how much they want to be away from home? They are going to be away from everything they are familiar with. They are going to be lonely if they don’t have friends going to the same college with them. For this one, I strongly recommend that the teen joins a forum for incoming students. Ask the college if they can have the contact email address for their roommate if it’s not in the communication received.
To help get your teen prepared, here are a few books I recommend for them to start reading.
One of my main concerns is that my daughter has ADHD. I’ve found this is a good book as well:
In conclusion, these are just a very few life skills a teen needs to have before going to college. What other skills would you suggest to that college student?