Independent Living Skills


5 minute Independent Living Skill Activities

1. Put on lotion/hand sanitizer

2. Read/compare a variety of menus

3. Read a variety of different maps (school/community buildings, city/state, parks etc)

4. Use CCTV or hand held magnifier to look at a variety of coupons (talk about what it could be used for, where you can use it, etc)

5. Make chocolate milk

6. Make microwave popcorn

7. Make microwave pretzels

8. Use toaster to make toast, pop tart, bagel etc.

9. Read utility bill (date due, amount owed, address to send it to, etc.

10. Open bag of pretzels, chips, etc.

11. Sort/name/count money

12. Learn folding techniques for money

13. Count specified amount of money and use vending machine

14. Fold washcloths/hand towels/bath towels

15. Practice putting on gloves/mittens

16. Use key to open door lock

17. Open/close a variety of different doors

18. Peel orange/banana

19. Frost a cupcake or cookie

20. Make hot chocolate

21. Compare different kinds of grapes, apples, vegetables etc.

22. Tax or no tax (what items are taxed and what items are not)

23. File/paint fingernails

24. Tell me what you are wearing?  I am wearing …, your friend is wearing…

25. How much does it cost.  Look at a variety advertisements and guess how much things cost

26. Get a drink of water from a water fountain

27. Put a straw in a juice box and drink it

28. Clip/unclip a chip bag

29. Open/close a variety of different containers

30. Use CCTV or magnifier to read medicine bottle

31. Open applesauce or pudding cup and use spoon to eat

32. Tie shoes

33. Put items in a zip lock bag and close

34. Put items in/take out of backpack

35. Take lid off/put lid on game

36. Get game pieces out/put away

37. Make a sandwich, cut in half and put in sandwich bag

38. Wash and dry face/hands

39. Get out cleaning wipe and wipe off table

40. Put pillow in pillowcase

41. Fold shirts/pants

42. Put clothes on hangers

43. Change batteries in a game and play it.

44. Sweep floor

45. Vacuum floor

46. Answer the phone

47. Make a phone call/leave a message

48. Write a thank you letter, put it in an envelope, address it and put a stamp on it

49. Staple or put paperclips on a stack of papers

50. Wrap a gift

51. Take money out of a coin purse and put in a piggy bank

52. Open a key or combination lock

53. Open/drink a single serving milk

54. Wash/dry dishes

55. Spread butter and jelly on crackers

56. Use paper towel/napkin to wipe mouth and hands

57. Pull paper towel off roll or napkin out of napkin dispenser

58. Pull tissue out of box and wipe/blow nose

59. Carry tray to the sink or trash can

60. Practice personal information (phone number & address)

61. Loop a belt through belt loops

62. Lace shoes

63. Tie a necktie

64. Put on a band aid

65. Buy something out of a vending machine

66. Set a simple table setting

67. Use condiments from a variety of containers

68. Use a can opener

69. Write out a shopping list

70. Talk about what stores sell items on your shopping list

71. Water plants

72. Sort items for recycling

73. Use a broom and a dust pan

74. Use simple household tools to fix something

75. Clean your glasses

76. Identify clothes that are inside out

77. Match socks

78. Sort silverware

79. Clean/organize contents of closet or bag

80. Find exits in buildings

81. Discuss what to do in emergencies (fire, tornando)

82. Learn parents full name and what kind of car they drive

83. Exposure to several different kinds of phones

84. Make own list of important numbers

85. Call for take-out food

86. Set and use an alarm clock

87. Use a watch

88. Name the months of the year/days of the week

89. Look through a catalog and make a wish list

90. Role play a job interview

91. Complete a job application

92. Talk about and research various careers

93. Describe own eye condition

94. Fold money

95. Play a board game

96. Put up the school flag

97. Stack chairs in the room

98. Wash the table

99. Find all of the Braille signs in a building

100. Read a tactile or large print map

Show and Tell

Find a variety of items to compare and contrast. The possibilities are endless!

  • belts
  • hats
  • sandals
  • boots
  • tennis shoes
  • necklaces
  • earrings
  • bracelets
  • watches
  • water bottles
  • candles
  • perfume/cologne
  • sunglasses
  • flowers
  • pet toys
  • light bulbs
  • fruit/vegetables
  • utensils (tongs, spatula, etc)
  • backpacks
  • coats
  • cell phones
  • socks
  • scissors/pens/markers/tape
  • make up
  • shirts
  • pants
  • shorts
  • hand tools
  • hair accessories
  • key chains
  • towels
  • lunch boxes
  • packs of gum
  • lanyards
  • juice boxes
  • remote controls
  • magazines
  • sponges
  • slippers
  • purses
  • wallets
  • cameras
  • salt and pepper shakers
  • gloves
  • mittens
  • scarves
  • coffee cups
  • picture frames
  • vases
  • shampoo and conditioner containers

Name as many as you can!

Name as many kinds of _______ that you can think of…?

  • cheese
  • cookies
  • drinks
  • cereal
  • cars
  • candy bars
  • animals with 4 legs
  • vegetables
  • fruits
  • things in cans
  • games
  • restaurants
  • fast food restaurants
  • things to wear
  • flowers
  • trees
  • ice cream
  • soup
  • singers/musical groups
  • stores
  • things that are green, blue, red, etc.
  • television shows
  • types of boots
  • sporting events

Did you know?

  • People text with their thumbs
  • School buses have the name of the school district, a bus number and an emergency back door
  • That people put their flag up on their mailbox when they have mail that they want the mailman to pick up
  • People sometimes keep their winter hat on even when they are inside
  • Some people don’t take their Christmas lights down until summer
  • Some ATMs have braille on the keypad and will talk if you plug headphones into it
  • Some ipods show the name of the song playing and a picture of the CD
  • Shopping carts can be pushed together into a long line
  • Meijers, Walmart, CVS, 7-11 etc. are open 24 hours
  • Some restaurants have all you can eat french fries, soup, fish, pasta, etc.
  • What are your ideas?

Used with permission from Lynn Pensari and Johanna Anand