One of the life skills our children will need over and over is how to fill out forms.
Our children will fill out hundreds of forms throughout their lives. It only follows that practicing this necessary (although tedious) skill can ease the process in the future and hopefully prevent needless do-overs. I mean, how many times have you started to fill out a form, only to realize that you've been filling it out incorrectly? I know I have done that several times.
Forms and applications require names, birth dates, and addresses to be written in dozens of different ways. You can prepare your children for this real-world skill by introducing them to a variety of forms and actually having actually practice filling them out. I did this with my kids this last school year, and not only did they have a lot of fun doing it, but they really learned a lot!
Teaching Suggestions and Resources
- Teach your children how to look over a form first, before filling anything out. Have them check for directions such as "complete in blue or black ink" or "print only." Also have them take note of any parts that they do not need to fill out, such as sections that say "office use only."
- Have your children use this worksheet to practice filling in their name and birth date in various ways.
- Collect forms from around your community and have your children fill out the name, birth date, and address portions. Here are some ideas for some forms you might like to collect:
- library card applications
- forms at the post office (i.e. change of address, mail forwarding, etc.)
- tax forms
- applications for grocery savings cards (like Kroger, CVS, etc.)
- DMV forms
- order forms (such as mail order catalogs)
- magazine subscription cards (found in the magazines you have at home)
Teaching your child to recognize how to fill out different forms will be a better start than most of us have had. I still fail to fill out forms correctly sometimes because I don't always follow the steps I teach in this post.
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