This thread is for discussion on what skills/ativities/etc you think are important for teaching (or paying someone else to teach) your kids. Or what did you wish you learned at 12 you never did, or what was a big waste of time/money for your parents? Activities I'd like to instill in my children: Typing: When I was growing up, just before the internet emerged from its military niche, typing was well on its way to becoming quaint technology. Voice recording and recognition software was touted as the "way of the future", and as a result I never learned typing. But now with the internet typing and literacy are more important skills than when I was a kid, I think i'd make sure that proper typing was taught early and refreshed often. I'm typing with the "religious method" right now ("seek and ye shall find") Foriegn Language: I feel this is the largest difference when compared to how I was raised. My parents were of the "if you move to America its your job to speak english" generation, and I had a whole semester of French in middle school, because everybody vacationed in Paris. Personally I'll do everything in my power to teach a 2nd language starting at birth. (my current foster kid didn't start a second language till highschool as a requirement and as a result, will probably never become accomplished or care for it). In the globalizing future, I think its probably the best thing i could do. and I'd start with either Spanish (because america is becoming more latinized), or mandarin-chinese, because China will likely become THE global player for the next generation. Martial Arts: I have never fought-off an attacker, or even gotten into a fistfight since I took my first TaeKwonDo lesson at 13, but it remains as probably my most important life lesson. What I learned about self control, respect, self motivation, and improvement I wouldn't trade for an extra million in cash. I'll do everything I can to get my offspring intrested in any of the martial arts, because I believe it provide the greater lifestyle benefit than any other activity. Activites I won't be instilling in my children: Fishing: I like eating fish, but fishing has to be the most godawful boring passtime ever devised. Plus I'd have to buy a boat ( a major expense), and at best, what could i hope to instill in my children: That happiness is sitting still and drinking a 12-pack at a time? I think not. I'm also against "hunting" that involves never leaving a tree-stand or duck blind. If you wanna hunt fine... but don't sit real still for 8 hours and hope for animals to walk in front of your rifle you lazy SOB. Piano lessons: I guess my parents thought I was supposed to be the next Lang Lang. What they got was years of piano tutor bills and a grown child that can't remember how to play chopsticks. i didn't learn because I didn't want to learn at the time. So if any of my kids want to learn to play a musical instrument, that'll be peachy, but I won't ever suggest that they should learn if they don't want to.