One of my greatest worries in life is what The Boy will do when I am gone. My goal, and the goal of most special needs parents, is to prepare my son to be the most independent person he can be. We don’t know yet what his living situation will be, nor do we know how and where he will work. But right now, I can prepare him for the basics, and I can do it by introducing him to things adults do every day. Each introduction may or may not be successful, but at least he will have had the experience so that we can build on it in the future.
Here is the Keys to Independence Challenge I mentioned last week.
How does this work?
For each day of the month of April, you attempt to introduce your child to the skills above. If they’ve already had experience with it or do it on a regular basis, try switching things up a bit to increase flexibility. If you’d like to document your work with a picture or a status update, you can do so on social media with the hashtag #keystoindependence so people can check it out and get some inspiration.
Is this only for teenagers?
Nope. You can totally do many of these with younger children, with a little forethought. It could just be learning about the skill rather than actually performing it, too.
Is this only for kids with special needs?
Heck no! I know some neurotypical adults who could benefit from this practice! 😉
What if we miss a day (or three or five)?
Hey, life happens. Especially in a special needs home. No worries! You can skip it completely, or come back to it in May, if you’d like. No one is keeping score.
What if my kiddo doesn’t want to do it?
The Boy is of an age where he relishes the thought of being an adult, and having a little independence. I’ve prepped him a bit for this, but I have some backup incentives, too. Think about what motivates your kiddo and see if you can’t build that into the challenge.
What if I don’t understand what the day’s task is?
Interpret for yourself, or check my facebook page or social media and search for the #keystoindependence hashtag – you’ll see at least my take on the day’s prompt. I just opened up an Instagram account for this very purpose @SimpleIJustDo! But there are no right or wrong answers here.
What if I don’t want to post about it or post pictures?
No worries! You do you! But we’d love to hear how it’s going for you! If you do decide to post, just include the #keystoindependence hashtag so we can find you.
If you have more questions, feel free to let me know. I’ll be posting about the challenge on my facebook, twitter, and now instagram accounts if you want to follow. If not, I’ll still be posting about regular stuff, too.
As always, thanks for your support, and here’s to an enriching April!