Life Skills Achievement Award Requirements for Owls (Adults 18+)

_____1.  Demonstrate the ability to complete all Penguin – Eagle Life Skill Achievement tasks.

_____2.  Understand how to read a ballot and explain why it is important to read through every bill, proposition, candidate description, etc. before voting.

_____3.  Be able to explain ideals of the various political parties, including all smaller parties on a ballot such as the Green Party or the Tea Party.

_____4.  Vote in your local election, but only after completing requirements 2 and 3. Be able to explain why you should never vote if you do not understand what or who you are voting for.

_____5.  Be able to explain the concepts of media bias and spin when watching, reading, or listening to the news.  Be able to explain the importance of getting your news from more than one source and getting both sides of every story.  Be able to compare and contrast two news stories on the exact same topic but presented through competing media.  Explain what each media source feels is the most important information to get across to the consumer and why it differs from other news sources.

_____6.  Get certified in First Aid.

_____7.  Get certified in CPR.

_____8.  Demonstrate how to change a tire.

_____9.  Demonstrate how to jump start a car.

_____10.  Demonstrate how to tie a tie.

_____11.  Learn how to properly paint a room and paint one if possible. Know what tools are necessary such as painters tape, drop cloths, edging brushes, etc.

_____12.  Make a short informative public speech. This may be a simple update report at work, an announcement at church, etc. Anything that requires you to get up in front of a group of people and speak.

_____13.  Demonstrate how to make a good first impression:

  • Make eye contact
  • Have good posture
  • Give a firm handshake
  • Dress appropriately
  • Be aware of and stop any nervous fidgeting
  • Speak clearly
  • Do not interrupt

_____14.  Understand the importance of protecting your personal information and how to avoid identity theft. (FTC Identity Theft website:

_____15.  Implement basic computer safety on all your devices. This should include understanding how to create strong passwords, using firewalls, and anti-virus software, and recognizing risky links and fake emails. If you have mobile devices or tablets, learn about various entry safeguards such as setting finger prints, swipe patterns, etc.

_____16.  Understand how to protect your privacy on the Internet and mobile devices. Understand all privacy settings of any social program you use such as Facebook, Instagram,Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, etc. Understand that anything posted to the internet, even in private communications has the potential to be downloaded, saved, shared, and made public.

_____17.  Know basic world geography including:

  • All seven continents
  • Locations of major U.S. cities including: San Francisco, Los Angeles, Seattle, Portland, Dallas, Chicago, St. Louis, New York, Atlanta, Las Vegas, Detroit, Phoenix, Houston, Philadelphia, San Diego, San Antonio, San Jose, Indianapolis, Jacksonville, Columbus, Baltimore, Milwaukee, Memphis, Boston, Charlotte, Denver, Honolulu, Anchorage and Washington D.C.
  • Locations of major world cities including: Amsterdam, London, Athens, Beijing, Berlin, Bangkok, Brussels, Budapest, Buenos Aires, Cairo, Sydney, Cape Town, Copenhagen, Damascus, Delhi, Dubai City, Dublin, Han Noi, Helsinki,  Jerusalem, Kuala Lumpur, LIsbon, Madris, Manila, Moscow, Tokyo, Paris, Prague, Rio de Janeiro, Stockholm, Toronto, Vienna, Venice, Zuirch.

_____18.  Learn how to remove various stains including blood, grease, and dirt.

_____19. Learn how to find a doctor, make an appointment, and what your health care options are.

_____20.  Know how stress affects your life and your health and how to develop positive coping skills that work for you. Identify three ways to reduce or eliminate stress and practice for a week and evaluate the effectiveness of each strategy.

_____21.  Education does not end with high school or college, but should continue for the rest of your life. Set up a plan for continuing education. This could be books you plan to read, subjects you wish to research, classes you wish to take, skills you wish to learn, etc. Write down how you plan to continue your education.

_____22.  Learn time management skills and create a general weekly and monthly schedule that will allow you to complete all your necessary activities and still leave some time to relax and have fun.

_____23.  Describe and research ways to search for a job (friends or relatives, newspaper ads, applying directly to an employer, temporary agencies, internet research, government agencies, school placement center). Define transferable job skills and their value in getting a job. (Skills you get from different roles you play in life- such as athlete, volunteer, artist, friend, family member, co-worker, and how to bring this up on a resume/interview). Describe ways to keep a job, ways to lose a job, and how to best deal with issues that may arise in the workplace. Describe dress code as it pertains to various jobs.

_____24.  Learn how to safely plan and pay for travel. (

  • Check out the seller. Ask tour operators and travel agents whether they belong to a professional association, then check to see if they are members in good standing. Contact your state or local consumer protection agency and the Better Business Bureau to find their complaint history.
  • Beware of unusually cheap prices and freebies. It could be a scam and you could end up paying more than the cost of a regular package tour.
  • Comparison shop. Determine the complete cost of the trip in dollars, including all service charges, taxes, processing fees, etc.
  • Make sure you understand the terms of the deal.. If you’re told that you’ve won a free vacation, ask if you have to buy something else in order to get it. If the destination is a beach resort, ask the seller how far the hotel is from the beach. Then ask the hotel.
  • Pay by credit card. It’s not unusual to make a deposit or even pay in full for travel services before the trip. A credit card gives you the right to dispute charges for services that were misrepresented or never delivered. If a travel agent or service provider tells you that you can’t leave for at least two months, be very cautious-the deadline for disputing a credit card charge is usually 60 days and most scam artists know this.
  • Call your credit card company with your travel plans.  At least a week prior to your travel, call your credit card company to let them know where you are going and when you will be there.  Otherwise they may put a fraud alert on your account when they get charges from a location that is not normal for your account and your card will get declined.
  • Insist on written confirmations. Ask for written proof of reservations and dates.
  • Ask about cancellation policies. You may want to look into trip insurance for added protection. offers pricing and policy information on plans from different companies and describes the different forms of policies available.
  • Do not post your travel plans online.  Social media sites are great for staying in touch with friends, but advertising when your house will be empty is never smart and invites theft.  Wait until after your trip to tell all your friends about it.
  • If traveling outside the U.S., make sure to leave a copy of your passport with a friend or relative.  This way if yours is lost or stolen, they can at least fax it to the embassy to speed up the process of replacing it.

_____25.  Learn how to properly use a fire extinguisher.

_____26.  Learn how to put on snow chains or cables or how to drive in inclement weather in your area (hydroplaning, ice, flooding, high winds, etc.)

_____27.  Learn how to calculate a tip. Average tip is usually 15% – 20% of the total bill. Simple trick to calculating a 20% tip. Move the decimal over one place to the left and double that total. So, if your bill is $100.00, it would be $10.00 x2 = $20. Or if your bill is $5.23, your tip should be .52 x2= $1.04. Demonstrate this skill at a restaurant.

_____28.  Learn how to properly plant, care for, and maintain a plant, flower, shrub, or tree in your yard or home.  Understand what type of plants grow in your area, what type of sun/shade they need, and how much water they require.

_____29.  Learn basic yard maintenance. Understand how to use a lawn mower (if you have a lawn) and hedge trimmers as well as the proper way to pull weeds. Understand the safety issues of using chemicals to kill weeds and unwanted shrubs.

_____30.  Learn the warning signs of violence toward oneself and of violence toward others. Make a list of local resources for getting help with violence.