Thursday, June 21, 2018

Six Survival Skills Your Children Need NOW

This article was inspired from a question posed on the Ed That Matters website  from the Conflicted survival card game.  I answered the question on the website, and am expanding on my answer in this article.

Conflicted is a Survival Game. Each card in the deck has a scenario that will test how you would respond to various problems in an SHTF situation. What would you do? (Note: I am not affiliated with the makers of Conflicted.)

The Scenario: The survival group you belong to has lots of children. What are three essential life skills that every child should know in today’s current society? What are three other skills you would add to their education in a post-apocalyptic world? 

My Answer:  There are lots of useful and needed skills, both now and in the aftermath of a SHTF crisis. Limiting my answer to three basics for now and three others for a post-apocalypse is hard, but I came up with the following list, which covers most of the major skills needed.

Three Basics

1) Attitude of Self-Reliance -- Teach your kids to start taking personal responsibility now for their own lives. Taking personal responsibility is the core of self-reliance. And self-reliance is the core of preparedness and survivalism. 

Taking responsibility means doing what needs to be done, not just what is fun or what you want to do. Taking responsibility means not waiting around for others to do it for you. Taking responsibility means not assuming if you don’t do it then someone else will. Be proactive.

Keys To Self-Reliance:
  1. Assuming responsibility for your own life
  2. Accepting responsibility for your mistakes
  3. Being informed
  4. Knowing where we're going (having goals)
  5. Making your own decisions
2) Strong Work Ethic -- Having a strong work ethic is a major key to success in life in any situation, not just during or after a crisis.  Teach your kids the value of hard work. Hard work is good, healthy, and effective.

3) Biblical and Traditional Values -- Teach your kids to have a relationship with God. Make prayer, scripture reading, and worship a regular part of their lives. Teach them the Commandments and the teachings of Jesus. Teach them to look to the perfection of God's Word as the ultimate authority for what is right and wrong. 

Also, teach them traditional American values - including the love of individual freedom & self-reliance, the importance of our Constitution and the Bill of Rights, the importance of private property rights, the morality of capitalism, the value of hard work, the value of human life, common decency towards others, and the traditional monogamous family as the basic building block of society. Be sure to teach them that our rights come from God, not from government.

Added Shills (start now) 

4) First Aid (including knowledge of wild medicinals) -- If your kids are old enough to be in school, they are old enough to learn basic first aid. They can advance their skills as they grow older. I would also start teaching them early on how to identify wild edibles and medicinals, adding to their skill sets collecting, preserving and using wild medicinals as they mature.

5) Self-Defense Skills -- Teach your kids situational awareness, which is more than just paying attention to what is going on around you, though that is an important start. It means both knowing what to look for, and how to assess (make decisions about) your surroundings. Check out my article on Situational Awareness and start teaching your kids these skills. 

I also urge parents to enroll your kids in a good martial arts class. Learning a martial art such as karate or judo can be a fun hobby, provide considerable health and fitness benefits, improve self-confidence, and give a life-long self-defense skill set. 

If your family or group has guns (and you should), then your kids need to learn gun safety at a very young age. Two resources are the Eddie Eagle GunSafe Club (a program of the NRA) and the recently-published book Toys, Tools, Guns & Rules: A Children's Book About Gun Safety.

It is up to you to judge the maturity level of your kids and decide when they should start firearms training. I grew up around guns and was shooting and hunting with my Grandfathers when I was still in my single digits. They were with me to provide guidance and supervision, but I was carrying and shooting my own guns. I also had to help clean anything I shot, even at that early age.

6) Food & Water -- This covers growing and preserving food, and saving seeds for next year, as well as raising and processing chickens, goats, and other livestock. Also, identifying and collecting wild edibles, and collecting and treating water.

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