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Skills Class

The learners who attend at Jo-Dolphin Swartland APD is of different ethnicities, cultures and diagnoses. From angelman syndrome, hydrocephalus, autism and down syndrome, to name a few. In our Skill Class, we have learners of the ages 12 to 42.

"Intellectual disability is one of the most common developmental disability, more than 425,000 children (ages 3-21) have some level of intellectual disability and receive special education services in public school under this category in IDEA.  In fact, 7% of the children who need special education have some form of intellectual disability." - Click here for more about this statistic.


Older children with intellectual disability may demonstrate deficits in memory, social, and problem-solving skills. Children with intellectual disability often have difficulty with adaptive skills, or tasks of daily living, that typically children do not experience.

In this class we have carers that not only look after them for the duration of 6 hours, starting from 8am to 2pm, but also doing their best to maximize the potential for success by providing a balance of visual and auditory stimuli in their teaching.

Firstly, much like the Early Development Class, here they need to maintain their general knowledge and skills but are also taught a variety of life skills. 

(Please note that these following tasks are performed under the supervision of a caregiver at all times. Instructions for skills are done via picture-visuals.)

For our life-skills programme, we specially created out Cherry Blossom Coffee Shop, where our more advanced learners can learn how to communicate with visitors, take their order (taking orders are done with a picture menu) and serve them. 

When our learners advance to the Skills Class, they are slowly introduced to kitchen-based skills for example, setting the table, kneading bread, baking muffins and decorating them, learning how to cook and clean afterwards (washing the dishes, drying and packing them away). 

We also try to focus on the responsibility of cleaning and maintaining order:

by teaching them how to fold and cut paper towels for bathroom use, dusting, sweeping and mopping the floors, hanging and folding the laundry as well as gardening skills and learning how to clean/shine shoes.

Students with ID (Intellectual Disability) need consistent and effective instructional support in order to learn new concepts and tasks that many of their general education peers may learn incidentally. Intellectual disability is lifelong. It is treated through management and stimulus programs aimed at helping children with the disorder acquire adaptive skills so they can live healthy, happy, relatively independent lives.

JDSAPD - Cherry Blossom Coffee Shop Post
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