It’s that time of year when many of us are setting goals for the next year or wishing we’d accomplished them last year. Instead of just wishing for these new skills, you can learn online from experts in their fields!
Have you ever said:
- I wish I could sing…
- I’m not a good artist but I wish I was
- It would be so useful if I could sew!
- Why can’t I take better photos?
I know I have, but the thought of trying to learn something new like this often seems overwhelming, time-consuming, and expensive! That is, until I started researching ways to learn these (and many other) skills online!
Useful Skills to Learn Online
Did you know you can learn many important skills (like the ones below) online? There’s so much information available for free or for a reasonable sum, that going to school for many skills seems like a waste of time and money. Over the last year, my kids and I have gone through several of these online courses together. We’ve learned new skills like solving the rubix cube, cooking, the basics of digital photography, and how to be better chess players.
The best part?
We’ve taken these classes together and they’ve been a great way to spend family time. This year, our plan is to learn a new skill as a family every couple of months.
To check for any current sales or discounts on these courses, do this:
- Click on this link for Udemy
- There should be information about any discounts or codes on the main page
- Search for the specific name of the course below (or any topic you are interested in)
- Checkout and start learning
Here are some of the useful (and unusual) skills you can learn online:
How to Solve a Rubik’s Cube
My brother learned how to solve the Rubix Cube when we were growing up and could eventually do so in under a minute. I’m certainly not that fast yet, but my oldest three kids and I can finally solve the basic 3×3 rubic cube.
To learn, you’ll need: A basic 3×3 Rubik’s Cube (this one is our favorite) and the course “Master Rubik’s Cube in 4 Days.“
How to Draw
I’ve always loved drawing, but I’ve found that it is tougher than I expected to pass on this skill to my kids. We’ve all enjoyed taking art classes together and I’ve learned some new skills as well.
To learn, you’ll need: Paper and markers, pens or pencils and search for the course called “The Secrets to Drawing.”
How to Play Piano
I have horrible memories of piano lessons with a grumpy teacher with bad breath. I’m working on remembering how to play piano with the help of Udemy and Hoffman Academy.
To learn, you’ll need: A piano or keyboard and the course called “Pianoforall.”
How to Play Chess (or Get Better At It)
My grandmother taught me to play chess as a child and I have always enjoyed it. She also never let me win. Beating her was one of the crowning accomplishments of my life, as both of my grandparents were in Mensa and she was quite the lady! Now, I’m enjoying playing with my own kids and learning with them.
To learn, you’ll need: A Chess board and the course “Chess: From Beginner to Advanced at Warp Speed.”
The Basics of Sewing
I have so many friends who wish they could sew. I’m so grateful for my mom and her infinite patience in letting me learn when I was a kid, but for those who didn’t get that chance… there is still time to learn! There are some great online sewing courses and you can learn to sew in a couple of weeks!
To Learn, you’ll need: A sewing machine (this is the one we have) and the course “Sewing 101.”
How to Train Your Dog
I know of several people who joke that their dogs are just wild animals that live in their homes. I realized my dogs had always been this way too. They weren’t mean or harmful, but they also didn’t like to sit, stay, come, or fetch… much less do anything more advanced. Turns out, you can train your dog at home and it is much simpler than it seems!
To learn, you’ll need: A dog and the course “Science-Based Dog Training (with Feeling).”
How to Sing
I’ll admit, I have my reservations about this one. It is one of my experiments for the new year and I’ll let you know how it goes. I’ve always wanted to get better at singing but have never had the opportunity to take lessons. I’m working through these online classes and I’ll let you know how it goes! (The courses promised to take you from tone deaf to master of pitch… we shall see)
To learn, you’ll need: Yourself and the course “Singing From Scratch – Learn How To Sing.”
I’ve always wanted to be a better photographer. If you saw any of my earliest blog photos, I think I’ve made some progress, but there is still a lot to learn. In fact, I don’t use most of the settings on my camera. This year, I’m taking an online photography class to try to improve my skills.
To learn, you’ll need: A DSLR camera and the “Photography Masterclass: Your Complete Guide to Photography.”
Ways to Learn Faster
I talked about the specific speed reading tools my kids are using in this post and about our favorite homeschool tools, but there are also some great courses to help with the process.
To learn, you’ll need: Yourself and the course “Become a SuperLearner 2: Learn Speed Reading & Boost Memory.”
How to Paint Like a Pro
My kids wanted to learn how to paint and it is one of our add-on classes for our homeschool curriculum this year.
To learn, you’ll need: Oil or acrylic paints and the course “Impressionism – Paint this Farmhouse with Oils or Acrylics.”
The Basics of Music Theory
Music theory is helpful for learning any instrument, and while I learned it as a kid, I don’t remember enough to teach it well. We are using an online course as a family so the kids can learn and as a refresher for me!
To learn, you’ll need: The course “Music Theory Comprehensive Complete! (Levels 1, 2, & 3).”
There are many other online courses that you and your family might enjoy, but these are the ones we’ve currently found to be the most beneficial.
Have you ever wanted to learn a skill but thought it would be too tough?