|Community Based Instruction|
Community experiences, by definition, are those services provided outside of the school building, in community settings, or perhaps by schools or other agencies (community-based work experiences, job site training programs, banking, shopping, transportation, community counseling, recreational services, independent living centers, adult services providers, etc.).
Although these activities are generally considered for children receiving transition services - beginning at 16 years of age under IDEA 97, for younger children with more severe disabilities, these services are important as well. Community based experiences and activities connect school learning to community learning in the actual environments in which the student will apply them.
WHY IS IT IMPORTANT?
Many youngsters with disabilities simply cannot generalize skills well enough to learn them in a classroom and have them carry over into real life community situations.
WHERE TO START?
As with most services for children with disabilities, Community Based Instruction (CBI) starts with an evaluation.
QUESTIONS THE IEP TEAM SHOULD ASK
The answers to the following questions should lead to a plan for Community Based Instruction.
HOW TO START
Ideally, the IEP team should be looking at the community as a resource but, frequently, they do not. What do you have in your community? How can each location be used to meet the goals of the student? No matter how small your area, many of the following resources exist.
WHAT SKILLS DOES YOUR CHILD NEED TO DEVELOP:
HOW DO THEY FIT?
In a very practical way, each community location can offer an opportunity to learn and practice the skills which are needed for adult living. The following is an example of a consolidated plan of activities and how they are tied together.
This activity can be used to offer an opportunity to order and purchase lunch in the community during the shopping trip and save the food that is purchased to prepare another meal. Students can 'run errands' during shopping trip for school staff. Lists of items needed can be collected from staff. Students can purchase items to hold a bake sale in school. Monies earned can be used to pay for a trip or special activities around the school. The possibilities are only limited by your imagination!
|(Created by Ruth Landsman of Parents Exchange for PPCRN.)|