Monday, January 24, 2011

A Case for Teaching Functional Skills

Hey everyone, I am so excited to share this article with you. I am posting it directly to this post. I share this one frequently especially with team members who do not fully understand the expanded core curriculum.

I think that once you read this, you will get it. I do not have the author. I got it from one of my grad school classes. This article is not written by me. Feel free to print it and share it. I hope it becomes one of your favorites, too.


My other brother Daryl
18 years old, TMH (30-40 IQ).
Been in school 12 years.
Never been served in any setting other than elementary school. He has had a number of years of "individual instruction." He has learned to do a lot of things!

Daryl can now do lots of things he couldn't do before!

He can put 100 pegs in a board in less than 10 minutes while in his seat with 95 percent accuracy.

But, he can't put quarters in vending machines.

Upon command he can "touch" nose, shoulder, leg, foot, hair, ear. He's still working on wrist, ankle, hips.

But, he can't blow his nose when needed.

He can now do a 12 piece Big Bird puzzle with 100 percent accuracy and color an Easter Bunny and stay in the lines!

But, he prefers music, but was never taught how to use a radio or record player.

He can now fold primary paper in halves and even quarters.

But he can't fold his clothes.

He can sort blocks by color, up to 10 different colors! But, he can't sort clothes; whites from colors for washing.

He can roll Play Dough and make wonderful clay snakes!

But, he can't roll bread dough and cut out biscuits.

He can string beads in alternating colors and match it to a pattern on a DLM card!

But, he can't lace his shoes.

He can be told it's cloudy or rainy and take a black felt cloud and put it on the day of the week on an enlarged calendar (with assistance.)

But, he still goes out in the rain without a raincoat or hat.
He can identify with 100 percent accuracy 100 different Peabody Picture Cards by pointing!

But, he can't order a hamburger by pointing to a picture or gesturing. He can walk a balance beam frontwards, sideways and backwards!

But he can"t walk up the steps or bleachers unassisted in the gym to go to a basketball game.

He can count to 100 by rote memory!

But, he doesn't know how many dollars to pay the waitress for a $2.50 McDonald's coupon special.

He can sit in a circle with appropriate behavior and sing songs and play "Duck, Duck, Goose."

But, nobody else in his neighborhood his age seems to want to do that. I guess he's just not ready yet.

Excerpted from: TASH Newsletter, December, 1987, page 6 CPSERRC

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