Special Education Life Skills (page 3)

By — Educational Resource Information Center (U.S. Department of Education)
Updated on Dec 8, 2010

Maintaining Good Interpersonal Skills

  • Demonstrate listening and responding skills. 
  • Establish and keep close relationships. 
  • Make and keep friendships.  

Achieving Independence

  • Do things without help. 
  • Accept responsibility for actions. 
  • Get around the community and be able to travel. 
  • Cope with changes in travel schedule. 
  • Cope with being lost. 
  • Follow travel safety procedures. 
  • Choose friends. 
  • Get to school on time. 
  • Decide what to wear.   

Achieving Problem-Solving Skills

  • Seek assistance when needed. 
  • Recognize problems. 
  • Anticipate consequences. 
  • Develop and evaluate alternatives. 
  • Develop goals, solutions, and plans.   

Communicating WIth Others

  • Recognize and respond to emergency situations. 
  • Communicate with understanding. 
  • Demonstrate knowledge of social cues and the subtleties of conversation, both verbal and nonverbal. Listen to others. 

What are Occupational Skills?

Between 70% and 80% of students with disabilities are unemployed and underemployed following graduation. Educators and parents still have much to do in this area. Early educational efforts need to be directed toward the following skill areas: 

Knowing and Exploring Occupational Options

  • Explore occupational possibilities. 
  • Identify the rewards of work. 
  • Locate sources of occupational and instructional information. 
  • Identify personal values met through work. 
  • Identify societal values met through work. 
  • Classify jobs into categories. 
  • Investigate local occupational and instructional opportunities in the community; make site visitations. 

Selecting and Planning Occupational Choices

  • Make realistic occupational choices. 
  • Identify requirements of appropriate and available jobs. 
  • Identify occupational aptitudes. 
  • Identify main occupational interests. 
  • Identify major occupational needs.   

Exhibiting Appropriate Work Habits and Behavior

  • Follow directions and observe regulations. 
  • Recognize the importance of attendance and punctuality. 
  • Recognize the importance of supervision. 
  • Demonstrate knowledge of safety. 
  • Work with others. 
  • Meet demands for high-quality work. 
  • Work at a satisfactory rate.   

Seeking, Securing, and Maintaining Employment

  • Search for a job. 
  • Apply for a job. 
  • Interview for a job. 
  • Maintain postschool occupational adjustment. 
  • Demonstrate knowledge of competitive standards. 
  • Know how to adjust to changes in employment.   

Exhibiting Sufficient Physical and Manual Skills

  • Demonstrate stamina and endurance. 
  • Demonstrate satisfactory balance and coordination. 
  • Demonstrate manual dexterity. 
  • Demonstrate sensory discrimination.   
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