As far as I’m concerned, learning to fish is one of those things all kids should learn to do. I consider it up there with learning to tie a shoe or learning to read. Its a basic survival skill.
I recall arriving at Lake Aquabhi to take a little hike with my daughter and a women pulled up in the parking spot next to us. She was very pregnant and had two older girls with her. And they were all had their fishing poles – just them, no men involved. I thought about them on our hike and when the lady and I arrived back at our vehicles at the same time I told her how cool it was that she was taking her daughters fishing. She seemed surprised by my comment – clearly this wasn’t uncommon in her family.
Of course no one ever took me fishing, not until I was an adult and now I just don’t have the patience to sit on the bank waiting for the fish to bite. But our kids love it and I am happy they have the opportunity to learn this important skill. Even at two years old, my youngest can reel in a two-pounder on her Barbie fishing pole with no help.
I may not be able to teach my daughters the best bait to use to catch each fish or how to find a catfish hole (I’ll leave that to Dad) but cooking, baking, sewing – making things from the most basic of ingredients to create something beautiful or delicious – that information I can impart. And one day when they are grown, they won’t have to rely on everyone else for all the things they need. That is my goal as a parent – to teach my children to be self-sufficient – to teach them beyond the textbook. Oh and good manners wouldn’t hurt either.