Hyderabad: Learning how to take care of the space you are living in and how to feed yourself is nothing to be embarrassed about and is certainly one of the most important life skills. But today’s parents tend to forget to teach their kids to be fully independent in this aspect and be able to take care of themselves and their living space without any kind of external help.
In most families, it is the girls who are taught household chores like cooking, cleaning, washing and ironing but not the boys because the prevalent notion is that girls would need these skills as it is their job to look after the household. But since girls and boys both are sent to school in today’s age in most privileged families in order to get a good education and make a successful career down the line, this is idea doesn’t hold completely true anymore.
Teaching household chores only to girls deprives boys of essential life skills to look after themselves in a healthy manner. A Spanish college is trying to correct the situation by introducing the compulsory subject of Home Economics to help boys learn how to cook, clean, wash, iron and make their own beds.
The initiative to close the gender gap when it comes to doing household chores and managing a home was launched in 2018 by Colegia Montecastelo, an institute located in Vigo, a town near North Western Spain.
The term 'home economics' refers to the science of operating domestic units efficiently, comfortably and sustainability. The class was a big hit for students and parents who supported the idea of kids contributing equally to household chores.
Initially, it was started off as only a cooking class, but after the appreciation received, it was expanded to cover the skills of washing, ironing and keeping the house neat and tidy, along with other manual skills like sewing, plumbing, carpentry, masonry, electrician skills etc.
The Home Economics class in the Spanish college is taught on a volunteering basis by certain members of the teaching staff, school campus representatives, and even the fathers of some of the students taking the class.
Any resistance that the male students initially faced in themselves went away when they realised that household chores are rather simple tasks if the steps are followed.
When a college offers such skills as an additional class, it removes the stigma associated with boys doing household chores and becomes a big win for gender equality. It helps boys understand from a young take the need for sharing tasks that go into creating a smoothly running personal space without putting added pressure on any gender.
Learning additional life skills like cooking or plumbing simply helps create adults who are more equipped to deal with the problems of life. When the idea of gender equality is included in the school curriculum in this way, it helps create well-rounded adults going off into the world.
Now, Colegia Montecastelo is planning to increase the access to this course while many other educational institutions in Spain have started to follow their example by offering such classes to develop everyday life skills for students.