I have always wanted my kids to be confident, self-sufficient, and capable. To me, education is about far more than just math and grammar. So when my kids were very small, I made this list of milestones I wanted them to reach. Looking back, I’ve tweaked some things but mostly the list has been helpful for me as a parent to see if they are on track.

I hope it’s helpful for you too, as you make your own list.

1 Year Old

  • Learn to walk
  • Go to bed without crying

2 Years Old

  • Count to ten 
  • Know basic colors
  • Sing the alphabet song

3 Years Old

  • Learn to follow family rules without any tantrums

4 Years Old

  • Learn to mix paint colors
  • Take swimming lessons
  • Cut on lines with scissors
  • Know right and left, hot and cold
  • Count to 15
  • Go camping with the family

5 Years Old

  • Catch a fish (with help)
  • Throw a spiral with a football
  • Finish a 1-week goal
  • Ride a bike without training wheels
  • Understand what bad touch, and bad pictures are
  • Write first and last name
  • Make your own bowl of cereal
  • Write the entire alphabet
  • Swim 15’
  • Know 15 sight words
  • Tie your own shoes
  • Count to 30

6 Years Old

  • Swim 35’ without touching the side
  • Take care of a pet for 30 days (fish, hamster)
  • Learn the very basics of how babies are made
  • Finish a goal that requires 1 month of work
  • Read all of the Bob books on your own
  • Memorize addition and subtraction problems up to 10

7 Years Old

  • Learn the The Book of Mormon books in order
  • Start a campfire without lighter fluid
  • Do your own laundry
  • Tread water for 60 seconds
  • Learn to play Monopoly without help
  • Learn to do long addition and subtraction problems
  • Mail a letter to grandma

8 Years Old

  • Save $100
  • Have a bank account
  • Dive head-first into a deep pool
  • Make a free throw in basketball
  • Learn the rules of a sport/game and explain it concisely to others
  • Pitch a tent and sleep in it
  • Read chapter books they like
  • Memorize multiplication up to 12x
  • Make Mac and cheese in a microwave by yourself

9 Years Old

  • Book a hotel for a family trip
  • Point out every state on a blank map
  • List something for sale on Craigslist
  • Read “Call it Courage”
  • Run a 5k
  • Read “My Side of the Mountain”
  • Learn the basics of Photoshop
  • Tie a hook onto a fishing line, cast a spinning reel
  • Record, edit, and publish a Youtube video
  • Type 15 words per minute
  • Learn three branches of government
  • Read “Where the Red Fern Grows”
  • Finish a goal that will require 3 months of work

10 Years Old

  • Pump gas into the car
  • Reformat a computer hard drive
  • Learn to use the basics of Excel
  • Learn to ski down a green run
  • Learn about another country and visit one
  • Do 20 push-ups in a row
  • Memorize all state capitals
  • Create a WordPress website 
  • Learn long division
  • Type 40 words per minute
  • Write a poem
  • Make a free throw in basketball
  • Start a business and earn $150
  • Change a baby’s diaper
  • Cook an egg or Mac and cheese by yourself

11 Years Old

  • Swim 30’ entirely underwater
  • Mow the lawn
  • Read and count music
  • Shoot a quarter group at 50’ with a .22 
  • Identify the North Star and the Milky Way
  • Set up a modem and router
  • Learn how the house and senate work
  • Memorize the 10 commandments
  • Create a budget and stick to it for a month
  • Jump off the high dive
  • Completely plan and book a family vacation
  • Start a business and earn $1,000

12 Years Old

  • Request an Uber
  • Read an entire book of scripture alone (Quran, Torah, New Testament, Book of Mormon)
  • Learn CPR
  • Go scuba diving
  • Attend a city council meeting
  • Learn to conduct music
  • Keep an online calendar
  • Get your own email account
  • Take Dave Ramsey’s Foundations in PF Class
  • Write a 5,000 word report
  • Respond to common challenges to one’s faith
  • Create a virtual (not real money) day trading account
  • Start a business and earn $1,000 in a single month

13 Years Old

  • Read How to Win Friends and Influence People
  • Change a tire
  • Participate in a debate
  • Serve in tennis and volleyball overhand
  • Read “To Kill a Mockingbird”
  • Read the New Testament alone
  • Fast for 24 hours
  • Jump start a car
  • Write a 10,000 word report
  • Sew a basic bag
  • Save $3,000 in a bank account

14 Years Old

  • Replace a light fixture
  • Read a Supreme Court opinion
  • Paint a room
  • Read the Doctrine and Covenants alone
  • Learn to slow dance properly
  • Shoot 30 of 50 clay pigeons with a shotgun
  • Create a bucket list
  • Earn $40 in a month from a passive income source

15 Years Old

  • Read Romeo and Juliet
  • Basic conversation with a Spanish speaker
  • Do an 80 pound bench press
  • Read “Hamlet”
  • Sew a button 
  • Watch a college class
  • Take your mom/dad on a date and learn how to talk to girls/boys
  • Invest $1,000 (parental custodial account)

16 Years Old

  • Save $5,000 and have a passive income source
  • Get a driver’s license
  • Run a half marathon
  • Negotiate the price and purchase a car
  • Write a 20,000 word mini-book
  • Call a girl/boy and ask for a date.  No texting.
  • Take your first class with college credit

17 Years Old

  • Hook up and back up a trailer
  • Learn to cut your own hair
  • Patch drywall
  • Write a proper memo
  • Write a 30,000 word book and sell it on Amazon
  • Take a few credits of college classes
  • Net $10,000 in a year from your small business

18 Years Old

  • Have $15,000 saved
  • Be ready to live on your own