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Teaching Independence now!

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Have You Taught Your Child How To ....
As school and activities increase, time decreases.  Spend time learning and practicing new tasks now so your children can be more independent and ultimately help you out around the house.
Can your child do these activities? Spend some time practicing together around the house: 
  • Hanging up a jacket or shirt on a hanger
  • Folding a shirt to put in a drawer 
  • Matching and folding socks 
  • Tie shoelaces 
  • Make a sandwich
  • Mix a drink like iced tea or lemonade
  • Cook an egg
Help Around the house
  • Make your bed 
  • Vaccuum 
  • Empty the dishwasher
  • Put away the groceries 
Move outside and practice: 
  • Digging a hole with a real shovel 
  • Planting flowers 
  • Shovel the snow in the winter 
  • Bagging leaves 
  • Picking up grass clippings and twigs 
  • Taking out the recycling or trash

Increasing Independence
Some tasks may be harder to teach then others and what you think is simple may feel like impossible to your child.  When teaching a task start out simple and break it down into steps.  Or modify it then work up to the actual task.  
Use picture direction cards.  For example if you are making a sandwich you need pictures of bread, the inside of your sandwich and a knife.  Collect your items then place them in order on the counter.  Or use your phone- take pictures as you complete the task so your child can use them next time! 
Write a story:  Your child may understand when listening to a story more so then looking at pictures.  For example when folding towels.  Johnny takes the towels out of the dryer and places in a laundry basic.  Then he finds a open space to fold on.  He takes one towel out of the laundry basket and lays it flat on the bed.  He takes one side and matches it to the opposite corners.  Then he takes another side and matches it to the opposite corners, making a square.  Then he moves on to the next one.  
Watch a video: Search a video on You Tube.  Have your child watch the video, seeing the task in action may help your child complete the task.  
Modeling the task: Complete the task alongside your child so they can copy or model what you are doing in each step.  
Remember to "Ask Rather Then Tell"for example "What will you use to spread the jelly?" Instead of "Now you need to get the knife to spread the jelly."