The keynote of this book is empowerment. Based on years of hands on experience, it provides practical, structured programmes that will enable parents, teachers and carers to train adults who have learning disabilities in the numerous small, everyday skills they need to live independently in the community.
The emphasis throughout is on respect for the individual and his or her needs and preferences. Personal profile charts enable the teacher to assess an individual and identify those areas where training is needed, whole the Lifeskills Network takes six core skills representing the main aspects of daily life and breaks each one down into main skills and then individual tasks. Step-by-step instructions and diagrams show how to teach the tasks and link them together to form a whole core skill, and checklists provide an easy reference for assessing progress. Light-hearted cartoons emphasise the cheerful optimism of the book’s approach.
Too often, in large-scale service provision, people who have learning disabilities are treated as a group, with rigid routines, limited choice and lack of personal contact. This book, by acknowledging the importance of personal identity, gives parents and carers the means to liberate a person with learning difficulties and at the same time ensure their own peace of mind about his or her ability to cope alone.
Monica Macnamara is an occupational therapist who specialises in Lifeskills Training with adults who have learning difficulties.