Life Skills Week, Part 1

So today is day 3 of "Life Skills" week. It has been amazingly successful and fun. On Monday we tackled laundry. I had made a complete list of steps to teach, and we just flew through them. I tried to stay out of the way and let my 6-year-old do the work as much as possible. With a step stool, he is even able to reach the laundry soap and dryer sheets, which are on a pretty high shelf! I still might move them down somewhere easier to reach, since I don't savor the idea of having to clean up a pile of powdered tide from the floor if his fingers slip :). Teaching how to fold each item of clothing was a bit time intensive (maybe because I've been doing it myself for so long that I have very specific methods), but he ate it up anyway. I really tried to keep my hands off of his best efforts while still insisting on some degree of quality control. His favorite thing? Folding socks. Except that he would get frustrated when they didn't look as nice as the ones I did :). We have a few things about the laundry process left to master, but I was pleasantly surprised at how much he really can do!

Yesterday, we started learning about food preparation. While I am definitely not ready to have him work with meat, there is a lot he can be taught to do. (I have to keep reminding myself that if I never let him use a knife, he will never learn to do it safely!) We started by prepping veggies for a stir-fry. He peeled and sliced carrots (some work needed on slicing them thinly and evenly) and cut up an onion and broccoli. I will prepare the chicken, but I plan to teach him how to cook the rice. Today we will finish up with food prep (for now) and learn the basics of cleaning the kitchen, from cleaning up the leftover food, to loading the dishwasher, to sweeping the floor and taking out the trash. Some of those things he already does, but we will be approaching it in the context of the whole process.

Tomorrow will be bathroom day. By the end of this day, I envision him being able to do the entire process on his own (I had an idea to print out all steps of the job, laminate it and hang it somewhere in the room for reference. Haven't done that yet, but that's the plan...) And last, but not least, Friday will be devoted to vacuuming and dusting.


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