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Carly's avatar

Do you feel that Home Economics is an important class to offer in middle and/or highschool?

Asked by Carly (4550points) March 29th, 2012

When I was in middle school, I got to take one year of it, but then my district nixed it because of budget costs. I could understand why they felt they needed to do that, but I remember learning a lot skills in that class that I still use today. However, I have friends who took the same course with me and they thought it was pointless and a waste of time.

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11 Answers

FutureMemory's avatar

I suppose it depends on the teacher and what he/she teaches.

When I took it in 8th grade it was a huge waste of time. The teacher ‘taught’ us how to bake cookies and the merits of keeping a clean kitchen.

edit: I did enjoy the class quite a bit, actually. The ration of girls to boys was about 4 to 1. Nice way to end your school day :)

janbb's avatar

I think it is a great elective; my sons had cooking and sewing for half a year and then shop for half a year. You don’t know what skills or interests will stick and it is good to be exposed to practical skills.

marinelife's avatar

I didn’t like it. I think perhaps a more general life skills course that teaches conflict resolution, budgeting, and domestic skills would be useful.

Blackberry's avatar

It just depends on if one thinks it important. I found it useful as well, but it’s not like I wouldn’t survive without it. I would’ve learned to cook after high school, anyway.

MrItty's avatar

Well, it’s the only reason I know how to sew up a hole in my clothes, so there’s that…

JLeslie's avatar

Absolutely. I think all students should take at least a quarter session of HE. I like the idea of a semester where it is expanded to include how to pay bills, balance a budget, and other practical things besides cooking, safety in the kitchen and at home, sewing, sorting laundry, etc.

Aster's avatar

I wouldn’t label it important but I did learn how to sew. The cooking part I forgot quickly and my ex MIL taught me.

JLeslie's avatar

I wanted to add I think it easily is part of overall health and self sufficiency. Children need to learn what a vegetable is and how to prepare meals from scratch. If we want our society to eat less packaged and processed foods, then a class that discusses being able to pick fresh produce at a store, how to cook a variety of meals, how to prepare foods quickly and safely is extremely valuable. I don’t really care if a few students find it boring, there are always bored kids in every different type of class.

Plus, it depends on the teacher. We made pasta, homemade cheese, bread, many different meals that allowed us to know how food was made, not just how to cook it. Learning to iron a shirt can mean big savings for someone starting out in the businessworld; that is a one day instruction, so even if you hate ironing, it is not a big annoyance to go through that lecture one day. Not ruining a load of laundry is also a big money saver. How to remove stains. Sewing on a button. Home Ec is very practical for daily life, not to mention those students who might discover a love of cooking, sewing, or some other part of the course.

I find that very many parents don’t teach these things to their children. The parents might be in a place that they can financially afford to send everything to the cleaners, and feel overwhlemed by time constraints to cook from scratch, or take the time to teach their children cooking skills, even if they do cook from scratch. So, things that were passed down several generations ago regarding home are not passed down as much anymore.

john65pennington's avatar

I agree it is especially needed today. Jobs are really hard to find. At least in Home Ec., you could learn the proper way to flip a hamburger at McDonalds.

Its about the only job available with such a big turnover of employees.

cwilbur's avatar

It depends on what it covers. In my elementary school, everyone took a half year of Home Economics, where you learned how to follow a recipe and how to plan a meal. Then you had the option of taking a year of Home Ec or a year of Industrial Arts (wood shop, basically). Those who took Home Ec learned how to sew clothing and how to furnish a room with a budget. Basically, fun but not especially useful.

That said, I think that there are life skills that need to be taught at some point: how to balance a checkbook, how to budget for grocery shopping, how to plan a meal, how to deal with credit cards and compound interest. Many of these things are things that parents could teach—it’s how I learned most of them, to be honest—but it’s something that all adults should know how to do.

Sunny2's avatar

I think there should be two classes that both the boys and girls must take. Cooking and Nutrition is one and the other is Handy Man Skills and Money Management. (Costs involved in owning or renting a place to live and budgeting).

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