What strategies can you provide for parents to reinforce the social & living skills students learn at school?

This will vary from disability to student....
First off, what skills CAN the child do? How does their impairment factor into the amount of adult support they need now and may need forever?
This is done usually at the transition age of 14 here in MN. We use inventories such as the COACH (sorry cannot remember acronym) and Enderle Severson Transition Rating Scale. In non-teacher talk, the student's parents, caregivers, teaching teams and therapists work together to focus on the student, and letting the student give input and guide the answers.
Some social/life skills for moderately impaired kids may include:
telling someone your name,
asking for help -- if lost or if you are looking for something (like the soup at the grocery store),
time telling - or using a schedule to get things done first work...then arcade....,
using a telephone,
SAFETY- both personal and health,
911 emergencies,
use of basic manners and meal etiquette,
waiting in line ( to get on a bus or check out),
simple shopping,
functioning in the community (like knowing safety signs, reading a bus schedule-riding the bus),
and choosing and attending social or recreational events like church, accessing the library, going to a play, concert, movie, or museum. ---JUST TO NAME A FEW---

The school system should work with the family to help find the best strengths and the needs and DREAMS of the student and his/her and implement these into his/her IEP.
Good Luck! please email me personally for more details, I'd be happy to help.
There are many life skills that students should learn in school. With all the emphasis on academic assessment, social, communicaiton, and self-care skills have gone by the wayside. The outcome is students that can pass tests but can not take care of themselvesas adults. Areas if life skills include employment, lifelong learning, self-care, leisure and recreation, community particiopation, health and safety, self-determination, communication and interpersonal relationships.

One specific area of need for all students is time management. Every student should learn to carry their own pocket planner and plan their own day. Asking students before school to list the most important things for them to do during the day and to cross off items completed is an effective strategy that enables students to learn time management, personal choice, and the motivation associated with self-management.
If this student is special ed. then they probably have an IEP which is suppose to be written in measureable goals. The parents should have a copy of this document. Ask the teacher which goals she is working on each week.
The parent should be part of this IEP writting anyway. Suppose you had a goal like this:

Parent: "I want Jimmy to stop touching strangers in public."
Teacher's goal: "When at the grocery store on weekly outtings, Jimmy will hold and push the cart down two aisles without letting go with no more than two cues to hold on."

This might be how you do that:
So the parent decides to go to the store to buy milk and bread. As they enter the store they warn Jimmy to hold on to the cart.(hands are busy so he won't touch) Then they go down two aisles and get the items. As they pass another person in one aisle, Jimmy looks like he is going to let go and reach for them, parent cues him again. There thats two cues.BUT Jimmy pulls away and manages to touch the old ladies arm..The parent leaves the cart and takes him out side immediately. Says what ever she says and when he is calm either goes back in or goes home. Try again tomorrow or next week- whatever. She is reinforcing what the teacher is teaching vica verca. WOrk on same goals as teachers
Strategies teachers can use to teach parents to teach their children to be prosocial are described. These strategies include teaching incidentally, performing social skills autopsies, coaching emotions, and assigning homework. Issues to be considered when working with parents and children from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds are addressed. We propose that by having parents as partners in the instructional process, students will better generalize prosocial skills across situations, settings, and individuals.



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