Seven-year-olds are so much fun! They've been in school for a while and are really starting to figure things out. They can also be a bit feisty. A great way to help a seven be independent is to teach them real life skills. They know these are important, grown-up activities and that appeal to them.

It's critical that we teach and train our children those skills they need to be independent. Like Papa Bear teaching his young one to fish, we need to teach our kids and that starts at home. Never forget that it's OUR job to train our children so that they can be independent adults.

What can 7-year-olds do?

Here are some life skills that a 7-year-old can learn.

Wash dishes

Oh happy day! Welcome your child to the wonderful world of cleaning up after meals. Get them a sturdy step-stool if needed for safety.

Floss teeth

This is an important skill to learn and do regularly. Use a chart or stickers to help get them in a regular habit. It's also fun to get those tablets from the dentist that when chewed reveal where they missed!

Clean toilets

Even more happy days! Make sure you use safe cleaning products (such as Shaklee or Seventh Generation). Kids often actually like swishing around that toilet brush.

Pull weeds

This one is not as fun for kids so teach them to carefully pull out the roots and then challenge them. "OK, pull out 10 weeds in the next 15 minutes!" This one takes lots of practice, so let them!

Memorize phone and address

If they haven't done it already, it's crucial that they memorize the family's contact information.

Read with comprehension

Reading is such a great skill. Make sure you read, read, read with your children and let them read to you. Your child should be reading every single day. Help them start to set some goals on the number of books they'll read and reward them.

Savings account

Take your child to the bank and let them open up their own savings account (they have free ones for children). Let them do the talking! And then teach them how to deposit their savings from allowance or work into their account and watch it grow.

These are skills that will help your child progress in his or her independence. Take time to teach them carefully and be patient as they learn. Remember, it takes the average child EIGHT presentations to learn, so teach and reteach patiently.

At 7, children are very capable. It's important that we treat them that way. Once they learn, let them do! Add these things to their regular chores so they can contribute to the family.

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