Friday, 18 July 2014

Duct tape and cats don't mix.....keeping special needs adults busy

Keeping our 18 and 19 year old children with significant special needs busy for the summer has taken a lot of planning on our part.  If not pushed and encouraged to do something one would sit and stare at the walls all day long and the other would be getting into all kinds of trouble.  There is the added challenge, that although they are both adults, neither function anywhere near their age.

Obtaining employment is not an option for either, at this time in their lives so it takes some creative planning.  Both will be continuing with high school come September in a life skill program.

We are fortunate enough to have a wonderful respite person who takes the 2 children out twice a week 5 for 5 hours each day.  During this time they are learning/practicing life skills.  They have been learning how to use the public transit system, they are learning budgeting and shopping skills, and social skills.  During this time they have been to museums, tourist attractions, hiking, shopping, the library, etc.  They are expected to plan and prepare for each activity.  Both are expected to pack their own lunch before their outing and this has been a huge learning curve for both.

At home we have been encouraging learning and teaching hobbies that will keep them busy and hopefully teach them some skills that may carry over as ongoing hobbies.  The hobbies are simple ones as their abilities are challenged.  Pinterest has been a huge help in finding activities to keep them busy.  Both have a raised garden bed that they are caring for, our son has been building all kinds of creations with Lego and our daughter is trying to learn how to play the guitar.

Today we have been making Duct tape wallets, we found directions here.  Both were kept busy for a couple hours making their first wallet.  The older of the 2 was getting frustrated with the stickiness of the tape (so was the cat that always wants to participate) and the other enjoyed this task so much that he made another.  They did some gardening, caring for their garden beds.  And later in the day they baked some chocolate chip cookies with supervision.

People with special needs need a lot of teaching and re teaching and it is helpful if this happens in an enjoyable way that doesn't feel like work.  We continue to search out activities that keep them active and productive while building on their skills.  Do you have an activity/hobby that may be of interest to them?  Please share.

1 comment:

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    God bless,