Self-help skills that involve the “activities of daily living” (ADL) such as getting dressed, going to the bathroom, cleaning teeth, and self-feeding.
Self care skills are one of the first ways that children develop the ability to plan and sequence task performance, to organise the necessary materials and to develop the refined physical control required to carry out daily tasks (e.g. brushing teeth, combing hair, dressing etc). The term ‘self-care’ would suggest that these skills are expected to be done independently. When self-care skills are not developed it becomes a limiting factor for many other life experiences.
Prerequisites to develop self-help skills:
In school, the child is assessed in areas like, eating, grooming, language (expressive and receptive), toileting etc. and based on the assessment and the child’s age an individualized plan is formulated wherein activities of daily living and self-help skills are taught to the child in a systematic and structured way. The assessments are done periodically so as to gauge the extent of the child’s learning and complex tasks are added to the IEP as the child attains mastery over simple tasks.
Assessments are an ongoing part of the school and the IEPs are constantly reviewed and modified to make them more effective and meaningful to the child’s growth and development.