Functional academics are fundamental to the LIFT program. Functional academics are those skills adults use everyday. For example, functional math includes math skills that are used in real life, such as counting money, making change, computing sales tax, budgeting, banking, completing income tax forms, use of tables and charts, measurement, time and calendar activities. Functional academics also includes functional reading and writing. Some examples of functional reading and writing include safety signs, labels, maps, forms, emails, lists and letter writing.
Community Based Instruction
Our program includes intensive community based instruction on a daily basis. Students receive mobility training including use of public transportation, street safety, and navigating the community in a safe manner. In addition, students learn about use of money in the community (making purchases, eating out, budgeting and banking) as well as recreational and community services.
LIFT students receive training in social skills and appropriate behavior in a variety of social settings. Students have many opportunities to practice speech and language skills everyday at LIFT, from interactions in the community, to speaking with work site managers and coworkers, or ordering food at a fast food restaurant. In addition, students receive guidance in making appropriate choices in clothing as well as the importance of hygiene, grooming and appearance.
Students receive real life vocational skills through volunteer work. With the support of job coaches, students work at a variety of work sites in small groups of 2 to 4 students. Please visit our work site page for a list of ongoing work sites and business partners.
Daily Living Skills
Students in the LIFT program learn about home maintenance and meal preparation. Our skills room is furnished with a fully functioning kitchen and laundry. LIFT students participate in cooking, cleaning, laundry, home care, home organization, and gardening activities.
Self-Determination and Self-Advocacy
A very important part of our program includes helping students to develop self-determination and self-advocacy skills. Self-determination includes the ability to identify preferences and interests, make choices for oneself, set goals and make decisions. In order to make these kinds of decisions and speak for oneself, students need a healthy sense of self-awareness. LIFT students learn to embrace their unique challenges and abilities in positive and productive ways.
LIFT primarily uses two evidence-based curricula to teach these skills. The first is transition band of the Unique Learning Systems (ULS) curriculum. The second is the Attainment curriculum as it relates to each of the transition domains.