Home Economics

This past Saturday (November 8th, 2011) I attended the Ontario Family Studies Home Economics Educators Association (OFSHEE) Conference was held in Maple Ontario. These educators are very passionate about what they do and are dedicated to improving the quality of life fore their students. Teaching Home Economics in schools helps give everyone the basic skills needed to lead a healthy lifestyle.

When you hear the words “Home Economics” you might have memories of learning to sew, cooking nutritious meals, and maybe even taking care of an egg for a week as a ‘baby’. Whether or not you enjoyed this experience, you have to admit that cooking, personal finances, family planning and sewing are basic skills that kids need to learn. The problem is Home Economics is no longer mandatory in schools and students are expected to learn these skills from their parents or on their own; which unfortunately is not possible for all adolescents.

We are so focused on furthering our education, in order to get a job, but what about life skills? What happens in the future when these students with their new young families face hard times and no one knows how to make a nutritious and economical meal, preserve food or create a family budget? Sure you can learn all of the theory in the world, but will this help your family, if you need to live on a strict budget due to loss of income? How can one expect the next generation to manage all of these things when they have never been  formaly educated on these topics? Home Economics should be mandatory. Every student should have access to learning basic life skills. This especially rings true for male students who may not pick Home Economics as an elective, due to gender roles.

Making these classes mandatory would help prepare students for life on their own and would improve their health, happiness and overall quality of life. Currently Ontario Pork is working with some Home Economists who help us with recipe development and cooking demonstrations. Often people do not cook at home becuase they do not know how. This is why Ontario Pork makes an effort to educate consumers on proper cooking techniques, food safetly and recipes for pork. Those who attend pork cooking demonstrations are always shocked at how easy it can be to make a delicious, economical and nutritious homemade meal.

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