Teach Your Child Self-Care Skills

"Steps to Independence" is your textbook to lessons in self-help

Steps to Independence

For some children with special needs, even the simplest things require carefully thought-out teaching. Dressing and hand-washing and bed-making and even getting a spoon to the mouth without disaster are all projects you may want to tackle with your child, but it's not always easy to see how to teach things that seem so simple and so obvious. Steps to Independence helps you break even these basic self-care skills into smaller steps and lead your child backward through them so that no matter what, there's always a successful outcome.

 The book is full of good suggestions for a wide range of skills children will need to take care of themelves; to start right in teaching self-care skills, turn to Chapter 9 and:

  1. Use the Self-Help Checklist to pinpoint skills your child needs to work on.
  2. Fill out the list of three Self-Help Skills to Teach.
  3. Break each of those skills into smaller steps.
  4. Make up a blank Progress Chart for each skill using the example shown.
  5. Strategize your teaching techniques using the worksheet and instructions provided.
  6. Have a reward ready to recognize your child's hard work.

Just as tooth-brushing and shoe-tying and zipper-zipping are necessary skills for children to acquire, breaking down tasks and organizing them in a way your child can manage is a necessary skill for parents of children with special needs. This lesson will help you reach your goal, too. Have a reward ready for yourself!