Do you practice life skills in your SPED classroom? If you don’t, then you should! No matter what age your students are, they will benefit from life skills instruction. Life skills centers are a fun, effective way to teach your students life skills. Let me show you how to set up life skills centers.
What Materials Do I Need?
If you want to incorporate life skills centers in your classroom, shop the resource HERE. You will be provided with monthly life skills centers to last you all year long. To get started, you’ll need some materials. Each month, you’ll focus on a different skill. When you are preparing your centers, look through and see what materials you’ll need. I suggest asking your students’ families for the items you’ll need. If you don’t get what you need, ask your friends and family! You’ll be surprised how many people want to donate. Once you have all your materials, you are ready to go!
Each month you will focus on a different skill. Yes, you focus on one skill per month. This gives plenty of time to teach the skill and to generalize across settings. At the beginning of each month, send home the parent letter that introduces the skill. By doing this, you are keeping families informed and then they can practice the skill at home. We are all about generalizing!
Let’s Get Started
Okay, you have your materials, you’ve sent home the monthly parent letter, let’s get these centers started. How? First, you’ll want to organize your materials. I’ve found it easiest to put all the materials for each month in a bin. For example, I have a bin for February with all our materials for setting the table- plates, utensils, napkins, cups, placemats, and visuals. In addition to my monthly bins, I also have a binder where I’ve organized all the monthly parent letters, data sheets, and award sheets.
How Do I Implement It?
Now you have everything organized and ready to go. How do you implement it? Short answer, however is going to work best for your schedule. In my schedule, I have a Life Skills Block. Every student is working on our life skills centers at that time. It works best for my classroom because it is a time when I have all my staff in the room, so we can divide and conquer working with the kids.
When our Life Skills Block rolls around, we pull out our monthly bin, I grab the binder, and we pass out the materials and visuals to the students. Once everyone has their materials, we get to work. Each staff member is assigned a few students to take data on and assist. These centers are quick. We get everything finished in about 20 minutes or so. At the end of the month, I send home the award certificate for completing the life skills center of the month.
Have I convinced you to start life skills centers yet? If you’re ready to get started, shop the bundle HERE. (or on TPT here) If you want to learn more about the life skills centers check out Alyssa’s blog post on how to start life skills centers. How else do you work on life skills in your SPED classroom? Share in the comments to help others! What resource do you want me to show you how to use next?