Over time, lots of kids with language and developmental delays develop a degree of learned helplessness: they get used to their parents and others anticipating their needs and can become passive and reactive. They may struggle to complete daily tasks such as getting dressed, brushing their teeth and making their beds, which can cause frustration for the child (and of course for the rest of the family).
To empower children to be less passive and more self-reliant – and to help parents who are sick of giving their child the same instructions every day – we’ve developed a single-page template called “Things I Do For Myself”.
Fully editable (Word and Pages versions), this template lists 15 daily tasks the child is expected to do without help or reminders every day, and enables the child to tick off activities as they are done. At the end of each day, the child tallies up a daily score, reflecting on the things they did for themselves, as well as the tasks they failed to do. The scores are then tallied at the end of the week to determine whether the child has done enough to warrant a small reward or surprise. As the child develops, more difficult tasks can be added and easier tasks removed from the chart.