Wake up. Brush teeth. Get ready. Get a bite of breakfast. Go to school.
This is the basic routine for kids around the world. Going to school is necessary in order to be educated in writing, reading, and basic math. But what about the other subjects?
Of all the classes students are required to take, none of them actually effectively prepare us for the real world. Sure, it helps students get into colleges, but whether or not someone decides to go for extra years of schooling does not change the fact that they will need to be independent one day.
Sadly, many students are not ready for independent living, as most of them have only ever learned complex math formulas instead of basic life skills. School doesn’t prepare students for the world, but perhaps reviving and re-inventing the home economics class could help to at least partially solve this problem.
According to Britannica Kids, including the study of home economics in school is sometimes described as “life educational.” Since much of a person’s life is centered on family and their home, home economics deals with the problems and challenges of homemaking.
Some examples of things that were taught in home economics are how to make a workable household budget, how to choose and sew fabric, how to make nutritious meals and how to care for children. These practical life skills are important to know.
However, nowadays, home economics is not as popular or even offered at all in schools. Instead, students spend hours in other subjects they may not necessarily need in adulthood. It would be more worthwhile for students to take home economics instead, which would teach practical skills and knowledge more relevant and essential to students’ lives.
In the past, home economics was traditionally a class intended to help women be better housewives. Nowadays, doing laundry or cooking is not just associated with women but is gender-neutral, as they are tasks that both men and women need to know how to do.
I propose that we reintroduce home economics as a life skills course in high school so that students are not graduating with only academic knowledge but also what they need to live independently as functioning adults.
In this reintroduced version of home economics, students can be given an opportunity to learn handy skills or techniques that they need to know as they reach adulthood, such as how to manage finances or apply to jobs. This gender-neutral class will focus mainly on preparing students for basic skills they’ll need to know anyway, regardless of their path in the future.
The home economics course can also include how to raise a child, cooking lessons for different nutritious dishes and so on and so forth. In a way, home economics is the guide to becoming an adult.
One way to help students prepare for the outside world is the reintroduction and requirement of home economics for high school. With the addition of this course, students’ schedules may become too cramped.
One solution is to let home economics replace an elective instead. Another option is to make home economics a mandatory summer school course. In this way, instead of sacrificing an elective in school, students just sacrifice some free time in the summer in exchange for some crucial life skills.
Whether or not the student does or does not end up going to college, practical skills taught in Home Economics are necessary in order to survive independently. With the assistance of counselors, students will be able to adequately manage their schedule and also be able to learn life skills they’ll need in the real world.
Home economics is more than just a class that teaches handy skills. People will need these essential skills throughout the rest of their lives. Such necessary knowledge and abilities must be taught somewhere, and home economics in high school is the best option.
All in all, a new version of home economics can be a course that prepares students so that they have the proficiency to survive in situations they’ll face in the future and be ready to “adult.”