It is a common misconception that people with developmental disabilities do not have the capacity to learn new things or new skills. However, adults with developmental disabilities enjoy learning new skills as much as normal adults do. They feel like they gained a higher level of independence and intelligence whenever they learn new things. Here are a few things you have to remember when teaching a new skill to an adult with developmental disabilities:
Teaching new skills to them requires a lot of patience and effort.
You have to remember the factors that affect their condition. Consider their age, physical and mental abilities, preferences and kinds of skills they can learn efficiently. Be patient when teaching them new skills or a new set of rules to follow. If they do not get it for the first time, then let it pass. Set an example for them to see how the task is actually done properly. This way, they can properly understand what you’re trying to teach them.
Start with simple tasks.
When you teach a new skill to adults with developmental disabilities, you have to literally start from scratch. Don’t jump directly to the procedure. First, you have to let him/her understand why he/she should do this task. Household tasks like personal hygiene, making a phone call, washing the dishes, or even table etiquette are quite simple for developmentally disabled adults. If they can learn efficiently through household tasks, you can improve their independence by teaching them more skills that involve outdoors, social interaction, and recreation.
Do you feel like nothing is working when you are trying to teach him/her a new skill? Don’t worry. You can still change your teaching strategies. Adjust to the person’s learning style. Does he/she learn effectively from reward? Does he/she learn from seeing pictures or hearing audio guides? Try changing the way you teach them and you will get good results.
Remember, people with developmental disabilities are human and they have the capacity to learn. If you know someone who is developmentally disabled and needs help with regards to his/her quality of life, safety, and environment, you can count on Bright Horizon Homes. Bright Horizon Homes has made its mark when it comes to providing developmentally disabled clients with care and support. Our staff believes that each one of us has the capacity to learn and to grow. Contact us today at 907-357-2233! Or you can visit us at 1453 Kanabec Dr., Wasilla, Alaska 99654.