7 things to teach your teens when they move out for university

Help your kids fly the nest safely with these lifestyle tips.

By Lauren McPhillips

2 things to teach your kids before they leave home
Living at home is a luxury, whether your kids realize it or not. So when they leave home without Mom and Dad to do laundry, cook and clean, what's a university-bound teen to do? Going Solo  (Luma, 2008), written by Brenda Bradstreet, is a guidebook that outlines what your kids will need to know to survive their first years away from home. Ranging from the essentials that even your parents told you as a kid, to little unknown tips and tricks on how to make it on their own, this handbook is the perfect little present to slip into your teen's suitcase as they fly the nest.

Taking both traditional and little known tips from Going Solo, here's 7 important pearls of wisdom that your teen needs to know when leaving home.

1. The essentials of air quality
The last thing your child needs when heading off to school is a space with poor air quality that makes them sick during their years of study. Often ignored as a cause of sickness, the level of heat and humidity in the air can cause colds, sore throats, and even the flu. Keeping the residence temperature between 22 to 23 degrees Celsius using a dehumidifier in the summer to get rid of humidity is a measure you can take to prevent temperature-related illness if your child doesn't have air conditioning in their new home. For the winter months, switch it up and use a humidifier to add some moisture to the dry air. If you don't have a dehumidifier, leave a bowl of water over a heat source so the water can evaporate into the air.

2. Laundry tools of the trade
Dressing to impress is a major part of most teens' lifestyle, so when a favourite pair of jeans or beloved rock concert tee is stained or faded, they'll need to know the ins and outs of laundry. When it comes to extending the life of your laundry, remember to tell your kids to take the time to turn your darks, especially denims, inside out, as they will keep their dark colour longer. A liquid laundry detergent rather than powdered detergent will avoid leaving a white residue on dark clothing. Another tip from Going Solo is to soak white clothes in cold water overnight to brighten them without having to use bleach. And of course, don't put that red sock in with the whites.

Page 1 of 2 - Learn 5 more things you need to teach your kids before they go to university on page 2.


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