What is Practical Life?
What is practical life?
Practical life are the activities that assist students in developing purposeful life skills for their continued growth and development. This includes refining fine motor and movement skills and practicing coordination, planning and problem solving.
Practical life activities are designed around real-life experiences that a child will encounter. Each practical life activity is made from real, breakable materials (ceramic, glass, etc) to teach the students to manage their items in a controlled environment.
In the practical life section of the classroom activities will be categorised into:
Preliminary Exercises: such as carrying and rolling a mat, carrying a tray or a jug, opening bottes and jars, spooning and pouring.
Care of the person: includes washing hands, doing up buttons and zips, brushing hair and preparing food.
Care of the environment: will usually include flower arranging, sweeping, moping, dusting, setting a table, and washing dishes.
Grace and Courtesy: includes social etiquette, such as introductions, greetings, requests, interruptions, offering help, respecting space of others, hygiene such as coughing, sneezing and yawning, turn-taking, and offering thanks.
Control of movement: walking on the line is a fun activity the students can engage with that practices forethought in steps to control the body’s movement. This activity can be extended on to incorporate a child using heel to toe movement, carrying an object, a glass, or balancing a book on their head!
Practical Life teaches students about gaining independence and contributing positively to their society. Practical life provides opportunity for students to practice skills required to gain control of movement and independence.
- Rebecca Grugan