Thanks to all who participated in the giveaway for file folders. If you won, will be getting an email from me on Friday (tomorrow) and I will announce the names once I have heard back from the winners! Thanks again to everyone who reads and follows for all of your support.
On Tuesday I wrote about setting up a secondary life skills classroom on A Special Sparkle. If you haven’t had a chance to read it, hop over and check it out. As part of that post I talked about the necessity of creating age-appropriate skills that are still focusing on basic skills and I used these templates as an example. I have worked with a number of students who were still working on 1-1 correspondence in middle and high school and one of the challenges is making sure to teach those skills in a way that makes sense. That means using age-appropriate materials while also working on counting in a functional manner. In thinking about that for a couple of students this past year, I developed a series of counting jigs or templates using common everyday items. The students were working on counting with 1-1 correspondence up to 5. One of the strategies we developed was to have them count silverware. The task served multiple purposes. One was to use functional, age-appropriate items, another was to work on the functional skill of being able to get the materials to set the table at home. And finally another was to work on packaging items using a template for a vocational task. I have used the templates in a number of ways from structured work systems to having families use them to create a chore for their child to get the materials. We then use a similar jig of a the place setting to set the table. So, I thought I would share these templates. They are pretty basic. There are templates for 3, 4 and 5 forks, knives and spoons so they can be adapted to the number of people who need place settings and for students working on different numbers. You can simply cut them and have the student place the fork or knife on template and then count. Students using a speech generating device can then find the number of items on their device and say the total. You can choose to leave the numbers on the templates as a number line or cut them off (or cover them up) depending on your need. I thought they might be useful for families at home as well as at school. Click the picture below to download them as a freebie with my thanks for all your support. What types of tasks have you developed using functional activities and age-appropriate materials for basic skills? Please share in the comments!