Teaching Life Skills Autism: Books to Add to your Toolbox

Teaching Life Skills Autism: Books to Add to your Toolbox

Learn about teaching life skills autism with these great books to add to your toolbox.

*This post contains affiliate links. Please see the disclosure statement for further details.

Teaching Life Skills Autism

Teaching life skills can feel very overwhelming because there are so many different skills. I want to give you the confidence that you can teach these skills because I will break the skills down for you in easy steps. I will also provide you with visuals and checklists to help you teach a variety of life skills. You can learn more about the life skills resources with the Mega Bundle of Functional Life Skills Resources Here.

Books for Teaching Life Skills

Below is a list of books and resources I have come across when researching ways to help teach life skills to autistic children, teens, or adults. I have personally read these books and found them all to be helpful in their own unique ways. Check them out for yourself and see if they can help you think of new ways to help teach life skills.

How to Teach Life Skills to Kids with Autism or Asperger's

The first book to add to your toolbox is How to Teach Life Skills to Kids with Autism or Asperger's.

How to Teach Life Skills to Kids with Autism or Asperger's  by Jennifer Mcllwee Myers

How to Teach Life Skills to Kids with Autism or Aspergers, teaching life skills autism

I have enjoyed reading and getting to understand Jennifer's perspective. I always want to take the time to learn from adults with Autism or Asperger's. Jennifer's personal experience with Asperger's Syndrome and having a brother with autism makes her perspective doubly insightful. Jennifer can show you how to:

  • Create opportunities for children to learn in natural settings and situations
  • Teach vital skills such as everyday domestic tasks, choosing appropriate attire, and being polite
  • Help individuals on the spectrum develop good habits that will help them be more fit and healthy
  • Improve time management skills such as punctuality and task-switching and much more!

Jennifer's straightforward and humorous delivery will keep you eagerly turning the page for her next creative solution!

Steps to Independence: Teaching Everyday Skills to Children with Special Needs

The next book to add to your toolbox is Steps to Independence: Teaching Everyday Skills to Children with Special Needs.

Steps to Independence: Teaching Everyday Skills to Children with Special Needs, Fourth Edition by Bruce L. Baker and Alan J. Brightman

Steps to Independence: Teaching Everyday Skills to Children with Special Needs, teaching life skills autism

This book gives parents of children from age 3 through young adulthood proven strategies for teaching children the life skills they'll need to live as independently as possible. Parents will start with a reader-friendly overview of the basics of teaching and then go deeper with a step-by-step guide to teaching seven different types of skills: get-ready, self-help, toilet training, play, self-care, home-care, and information gathering skills. In this fourth edition, they'll also find helpful updates and additions, such as

  • an expanded section on managing behavior problems, including guidance on identifying the problems, examining behavior, initiating a behavior management program, and encouraging alternative behaviors
  • a chapter on technology that reflects recent advances and shows how to benefit from using email, instant messaging, Internet communities, search engines, and software
  • a chapter on strengthening partnerships with other teachers in the child's life during IEP meetings, through classroom volunteer work, and in everyday communication with them

Get your Free Autism Life Skills Checklist

Below you can get your free life skills checklist that you can use to help your autistic teen or young adult learn these life skills to increase their independence and quality of life. Just enter your email address below to get your free life skills checklist.

life skills checklist

Autism Life Skills: From Communication and Safety to Self-Esteem and More

Another book that is great to add to your toolbox is Autism Life Skills: From Communication and Safety to Self-Esteem and More.

Autism Life Skills: From Communication and Safety to Self-Esteem and More – 10 Essential Abilities Every Child Needs and Deserves to Learn by Chantal Sicile-Kira

Autism Life Skills Book, teaching life skills autism

This book provides advice and reflections from autistic adults across the spectrum, as well as Sicile-Kira's own experience as an advocate and parent of an autistic teen, the book covers these ten essential life skills:

Making Sense of the World * Communication * Safety * Self-Esteem * Pursuing Interests * Self-Regulation * Independence * Social Relationships * Self- Advocacy *Earning a Living

teaching life skills autism

Taking Care of Myself 2: For Teenagers and Young Adults with ASD

If your teen is struggling with personal hygiene care skills this is a great book to add to your toolbox.

Taking Care of Myself 2: for Teenagers and Young Adults with ASD by Mary Wrobel

Taking Care of Myself book, teaching life skills autism

This book was written for teenagers and young adults with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD), this instructional book is also for parents, instructors, and therapists to help teens on the autism spectrum. The information is written in an easy-to-understand manner with simple how-to lists. This book is geared for use in an instructional or home setting for any teenager or young adult with ASD. Topics covered include: dressing for different events, feeling anxious in social situations, public versus private behaviors, staying healthy, anxiety, depression, and feeling suicidal, social media issues, sexual harassment, finding and keeping friends (including a boyfriend or girlfriend), safe and responsible sex, and deciding to have sex with a partner, and more.

I hope you find these additional resources helpful on your journey to teaching life skills. Let me know in the comments if you have any other books or resources you have found helpful!

Get your Free Autism Life Skills Checklist

Below you can get your free life skills checklist that you can use to help your autistic teen or young adult learn these life skills to increase their independence and quality of life. Just enter your email address below to get your free life skills checklist.

life skills checklist

Additional Life Skills Resources Just for You!

The Mega Bundle of Functional Life Skills Resources for Teens and Adults

Executive Functioning Challenges with Task Initiation: Resources to Help Teach Life Skills

The Best Functional Life Skills Resources for Individuals with Autism

Life Skills for Teens to Do at Home Free Printable

Microwave Safety Worksheet: Help Teach Autistic Students How to Use the Microwave

Microwave Safety Worksheet: Help Teach Autistic Students How to Use the Microwave

Learn how to teach the skill of using the microwave by using this microwave safety worksheet guide to help teach the steps with real life pictures.

*This post may contain affiliate links. There is no extra cost to you, but if you purchase something through our link, we will receive a commission. 

Teaching how to use the microwave is an important cooking skill to help increase independence when cooking meals. The microwave can be a great tool to make some simple meals or a great tool to use to reheat up leftovers.

Use the Microwave Safety Worksheet to Teach the Steps of Using the Microwave

You can get your Free Microwave Safety Worksheet to help you teach the steps of using the microwave.

How do I teach how to use the Microwave?

The first steps are to make sure you explain the safety issues when using the microwave. Make sure the individual understands how to use the microwave safely.

Microwave Safety Tips

  • Only use cookware that is specially manufactured for use in the microwave oven. Glass, ceramic containers, and all plastics that are safe to use usually will be labeled for microwave oven use.
  • Teach them about the importance of keeping the microwave clean
  • make sure to stay by and watch the food being cooked
  • make sure to watch how hot they are heating up water in the microwave
  • Teach them about how to handle hot foods when taking foods out of the microwave
  • What types of containers can go in the microwave to heat up foods
  • What types of items cannot go in the microwave
  • You can learn about more microwave safety tips here.

Teach them the Steps of How to Use the Microwave

  • You will want to go over the buttons on your microwave such as how to open the door on the microwave.
  • what buttons are start and stop/cancel
  • how to set the time on the microwave
  • as they understand the basic buttons, you can teach some of the more complex buttons as you see fit.

Once they understand the buttons on the microwave and how to open the door, you can go through the steps of using the microwave with them. You can model the steps for them and go through each step and talk through it with them. Make sure to point out some important steps with safety such as touching hot things after they are heated up or taking off foil before putting the food in the microwave.

You can use simple recipes to go through the steps of using the microwave such as some instant mac and cheese or oatmeal, or you could reheat some leftover dinner with them.

Write out the Steps in a Checklist

You can list out the steps of how to use the microwave for them in a checklist format or with pictures and words to help them visually see how to complete each step. You could also take real-life photos of them in action when using the microwave and use those photos to make a visual checklist for them!

I love using my iPhone to take photos of each step on how to complete something. You could also use this idea for when you want to teach a new recipe. If they have a hard time reading the instructions of a new recipe, you could try taking pictures of them completing each step with you so that they can go through the pictures to remember each step.

Get your Free Microwave Safety Worksheet to Help Teach the Steps of Using the Microwave

You can download your FREE copy of the Printable down below when you provide your best email address.

I have created a Free Printable just for you that makes this easy for you! I made a list of the steps of how to use the microwave and then we used pictures and words to create a step by step visual for them to better understand the steps to complete. I also give you microwave safety tips and strategies to help with teaching as well as simple microwave recipes you can try.

Other resources you will love

Are you looking for more Kitchen Safety Resources? Check out the post about teaching Kitchen Safety and get our FREE Guide! 

I hope you find these tips helpful and I always love hearing back from you!

microwave safety worksheet: how to teach autistic teens to use the microwave

Kitchen Safety Worksheet with Visuals and Rules to Keep them Safe While Cooking

Kitchen Safety Worksheet with Visuals and Rules to Keep them Safe While Cooking

Use this free kitchen safety worksheet to help teach kitchen safety skills for cooking.

*This post contains affiliate links. There is no extra cost to you, but if you purchase something through our link we will recieve a commission. Please see the disclosure statement for further details.

How to Teach Kitchen Safety Skills to Autistic Teens and Young Adults

Kitchen Safety Skills can be a tricky area to figure out how to teach because there can be so many different scenerios when cooking. There could be different outcomes based on different situations.

One area to start with when thinking about kitchen safety is setting up the kitchen environment, especially to keep them safe or if they don't understand what is safe to touch or use.

Setting up the Kitchen Environment

  1. Put knives away in an area they cannot reach.
  2. Try using stove locks to keep them from turning on the stove.
  3. Try using locks on the fridge or on the cupboards if they cannot be trusted to get food out on their own.
  4. Keep glass wear or breakable items in a locked cupboard or up high out of reach.
  5. Unplug appliances so that they cannot accidently be turned on.
  6. Place Stop Signs or visuals on items or surfaces where you don't want them to go or reach towards.

Neurodivergent Life Skills membership

Get your Free Kitchen Safety Worksheet Here

You can download our free visuals for kitchen safety below and we provide you with some options of stop signs that you can print out and laminate to put around the kitchen if needed. Just enter your email address below to get the free kitchen safety worksheet.

Kitchen Safety worksheet display image

Download the FREE Visuals Printable below by subscribing to our email list!

Teaching Kitchen Safety Skills

If the individual is wanting to do more in teh kitchen or has shown some interest in being in the kitchen with you, that can be a great time to work on teaching kitchen safety skills and awareness.

  1.  You could start by teaching what items in the kitchen are dangerous and how they could hurt them.
  2. Show them pictures or get the real objects and model for them appropriate behavior to use when around those items.
  3. Teach them how to ask for help so if they do get into trouble in the kitchen they will know how to get you for help.
  4. You could try using You Tube Videos to show demonstrations on how to use specific items such as knife skills or how to use the blender.
  5. Be with them every time they want to be in the kitchen cooking so that you can help model appropriate behaivors and show them how to do specific steps.
  6. Use visuals around the ktichen such as step by step instructions for specific skills they are working on.
  7. You could use checklists as reminders on things such as what to do after cooking food or rules to follow so they don't get hurt.

Free Resources to help Teach Kitchen Safety Skills

We also looked on the internet for more additional free resources you could use to help teach kitchen safety skills.

Please take a look at these free resources we found on Teachers Pay Teachers to help find additional ways to teach kitchen safety skills.

“After you finish cooking…” Kitchen Safety Task Analysis Visual Life Skills by Adulting Made Easy aka SpedAdulting on Teachers Pay Teachers

Kitchen Safety Rules and Lesson Plan by Pro Chef on Teachers Pay Teachers

Cooking with Kids-Kitchen Safety Chart by Debbie Madson on Teachers Pay Teachers

Kitchen Safety Life Skills Poster Autism Special Education by Curriculum for Autism on Teachers Pay Teachers

Life Skills and Social Skills Interactive Notebook Free Sample by School Bells N Whistles on Teachers Pay Teachers

Kitchen Safety and Equipment Memory Game Matching by Jordan Sveen on Teachers Pay Teachers

How to Put out Kitchen Fires Quiz by Christine Kight on Teachers Pay Teachers

We hope you find our free visuals along with these other free resources on Teachers Pay Teachers to be helpful for you when teaching Kitchen Safety Skills. We understand the importantance of teaching kitchen safety before learning how to cook and to help keep our loved ones safe.

Please let me know if you have any questions and let me know in the comments below if these resources are helpful for you!

Neurodivergent Life Skills Membership

Wait don't forget to grab the FREE Kitchen Safety Visuals!!

Other Life Skills Resources you will Love

How to Teach Autistic Teens How to Use the Microwave

The Mega Bundle of Functional Life Skills Resources for Teens and Adults

Free Visuals to help with Teaching Laundry Skills

The Best Functional Life Skills Resources for Individuals with Autism

Use these Sensory Friendly Autism Showering Products to Help make Showering Easier

How to Teach Kitchen Safety Skills for Teens with Autism with this free kitchen safety worksheet
How to Teach Kitchen Safety Skills for Teens with Autism
Teaching Laundry Skills: Free Visuals and Resources to Help

Teaching Laundry Skills: Free Visuals and Resources to Help

Teaching laundry skills can feel very overwhelming because there are so many steps to washing, drying, and folding. Plus there are so many different executive function and sensory components that go into teaching laundry skills.

Let me help you today by giving you tips and free resources to help you with teaching laundry skills.

Why Teaching Laundry Skills are Important

Teaching laundry skills is important because it helps individuals develop essential life skills that will enable them to maintain a clean and organized home environment. Additionally, learning how to do laundry can also save money by preventing damage to clothing and reducing reliance on professional cleaning services. Finally, laundry skills can help promote self-sufficiency and independence, which can lead to increased confidence and improved quality of life.

The Benefits of Teaching Laundry Skills

Teaching laundry skills can have numerous benefits, including promoting self-sufficiency and independence, saving money by avoiding costly laundry services, reducing environmental impact by using energy-efficient appliances and techniques, and improving overall cleanliness and hygiene. Additionally, learning these skills can be empowering and provide a sense of accomplishment.

Doing the Laundry is a Complex Task to Learn

Learning laundry skills involves a lot of steps and understanding. 

These are all of the skill areas involved in doing the laundry:

Fine motor skills such as hand strength and coordination to turn the dial, push buttons, or pour laundry soap.

Gross motor skills like balance, coordination, strength, range of motion to sort the clothes, carry the laundry basket, and putting the clothes in and out of the washer and dryer. 

Visual motor and visual perceptual skills to look and scan the washer for the correct dial and buttons, putting the correct laundry soap in the washer, or visually scanning the clothes for washing directions.

Sensory skills which could include the feeling and textures of the clothing dry and wet, the smell of the laundry soap, the heat of the dryer, and the ability to look down and grab the clothes in the washer and dryer. 

Executive function and cognitive skills: This could include keeping their attention to task, switching between tasks from what they were doing before needing to do laundry, noticing that they need to do the laundry, the steps to turning the washer and dryer off, following direction, keeping themselves safe while doing the laundry, and being able to problem solve if something goes wrong. 

Get the Free Life Skills Curriculum Year-at-a-Glance Plan

CLICK HERE or on the image below to get the FREE life skills year-at-a-glance plan to help you save time and be organized with teaching life skills each month!

Life Skills Curriculum Year at a Glance Planner

Tips for Teaching Laundry Skills

Here are some general tips and strategies you can use when teaching laundry skills.

  • Use stickers or markers to mark frequently used settings such as the location on the dial of the washing machine or dryer to help with setting the machine.
  • Use a marker or sticker to place a line where to pour the liquid soap or on the scoop with dry laundry soap so they know how much to put into the scooper. Otherwise you can use laundry pods to help with this step as well. 
  • Another general tip is if they are struggling with some of the sensory aspects when it comes to doing laundry then you could check out the book Seeing Your Home and Community with Sensory Eyes by Victoria Wood. It is a great resource to problem solve and find solutions to everyday daily life skills.

How to Teach the Laundry Skills

  • Model or show them how to do the steps.
  • Break the Steps Down or use Task Analysis to Help Teach the Steps.
  • Use Backwards or Forwards Chaining to teach the steps.
  • Use Social Stories to Talk about the Steps and why we need to wash our clothes.
  • Use video modeling to show the steps of doing the laundry.
  • Use a visual schedule to help them understand when they may need to do the laundry.
  • Use a picture board to show what steps are done within the skill of doing the laundry.
  • Use visual reminders or timers to help remind when to do the laundry or to switch between the tasks. 
  • Try using laundry apps to help show the steps.

Get your Free Visuals to help with Teaching Laundry Skills

Teaching Laundry Skills Free Visuals and How to Steps

Download our FREE Laundry Skills Printable that contains the steps to complete the laundry in a checklist format, visual sequencing cards with pictures and words, teaching tips, and activity ideas!

Just enter your best email address below and you will be sent the free laundry skills visuals.

Tips to Help with Sorting Clothes

You could have two separate laundry baskets for one with colored clothes and the other one has white clothes. 

You could put a picture of the colored clothes on one basket and the white clothes on the other. 

Teach them how to check the label on the clothing to make sure it can be washed, otherwise make sure to only by clothing that can be washed and doesn’t need to be dry cleaned.

Tips to Help with Washing Skills

Make sure to understand what washing settings to use on the washing machine.

Make sure to check pockets before putting things into the washer.

You could set a visual timer to help them understand when the washing machine will be done. 

Make sure to use laundry soap that they can easily use and the smell doesn’t bother them. 

Tips to Help with Drying Clothes

Show them how to put the clothes into the dryer and mark on the dial where they need to set the dial. 

Show them how to clean the lint screen. 

Tips to Help with Folding Clothes

A great tool to help with folding laundry is using a folding board. You can learn more about it here. 

I also found this video model on YouTube showing you how to fold clothes. 

Tips with Putting Clothes Away

When learning to put the clothes away you could have them just place the clothes into a basket and skip over the skill of folding or hanging up all together if that is too hard or time consuming for them. You could use plastic storage bins, laundry baskets, or cube storage to just have them sort out their shirts, pants, socks, underwear, shorts, etc. without needing to fold them or hang them up.

Teaching Laundry Skills

Teaching Laundry Skills can sometimes feel overwhelming because there are so many steps involved and there are some advanced skills with understanding how to take care of certain clothes, how to fold them and organize them, and how to get out certain stains. I wanted to help make this process a little easier to teach by making you a free printable with visuals to help teach each step. I hope that these visuals can be helpful to help you teach an important daily living skill. Laundry skills are an important part of our every day life and I hope these tips and resources can be helpful for you in your teaching journey.

Get your Free Visuals to help with Teaching Laundry Skills

Teaching Laundry Skills Free Visuals and How to Steps

Download our FREE Laundry Skills Printable that contains the steps to complete the laundry in a checklist format, visual sequencing cards with pictures and words, teaching tips, and activity ideas!

Just enter your email address below and you will be sent the free laundry skills visuals.

Additional Free Laundry Skills Resources

I also wanted to offer you some more free resources that I came across when searching Teachers Pay Teachers. You will have to create an account on their website, but it is free and they have tons of great teaching resources!

Household Chores Laundry Life Skills Unit by Check In with Mrs. G on Teachers Pay Teachers

Life Skills – Independent Living Skills – LAUNDRY by Career and Life Skills Lessons on Teachers Pay Teachers

DLS Doing the Laundry Workbook by Susan Traugh on Teachers Pay Teachers 

Life Skills Laundry – When to wash? by Breia Franklin on Teachers Pay Teachers 

Laundry Basics by Real World Life Skills on Teachers Pay Teachers 

Free Apps to teach Laundry Skills

Free Visuals to help with Teaching Laundry Skills
Free Visuals to help with Teaching Laundry Skills
Apps to Teach about Laundry Skills

Apps to Teach about Laundry Skills

Apps to Teach about Laundry Skills

Are you trying to figure out how to teach laundry skills? We have come across some helpful apps that may be helpful to you when teaching your child the steps to complete laundry. We have also found some games that may spark their interest in wanting to learn more about how to complete the steps of doing the laundry. Check them out below!

Free Laundry Games Apps

Basic Laundry Instruction App

Fabric Care Label App

  • Laundry Pro – Google Play Created by Vladimir Makarov, Laundry Pro offers an easy to read graph of the meaning behind laundry symbols

Stain Removal App

Please let me know if you found any of these apps helpful or if there are any others that I could add to the list! Let us know below if there are any more apps to teach laundry skills need to be added.

Apps to Teach about Laundry Skills