Life Skills

Life skills, also known as functional skills or independent living skills, are those necessary for an individual to participate in daily routines and activities. Generally, they are tasks someone else would need to do for an individual who could not perform them. Individuals with intellectual disabilities (ID) need extra time and scaffolded supports to master “typical” tasks. Many of the skills discussed in this entry are often overlooked as needing to be taught, but instruction in these skills can contribute to greater independence for individuals with ID.

Life skills activities include those involved in health and hygiene; home maintenance; meal planning and preparation; finances, education, training, and employment; community participation; leisure and recreation; and interpersonal relationships. These skills enable individuals with ID to enjoy and ...

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