Activities of Daily Living

Skills 4 Life Provides Individual, Age-Appropriate Instruction

in Activities of Daily Living

Skills 4 Life Pediatric Occupational Therapy offers support with Activities of Daily Living (ADLs) and Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (IADLs) to students of all ages.

Teaching children to be independent in ADLs and IADLs promotes confidence and self-esteem.

ADLs are activities that we all do every day to care for ourselves, including:

  • Bathing
  • DressingActivities of Daily Living
  • Shoe tying
  • Grooming
  • Hygiene
  • Feeding 

IADLs are more complex activities that promote independent living, including:

  • Time management
  • Chores/cleaning/laundry
  • Care of others/pets
  • Money skills (from coin identification to high school financial planning)
  • Shopping
  • Transportation
  • Meal preparation

“We have known Karina since 2011 and have worked with Skills 4 life since 2013. Our son needs help to develop foundational and life skills for future independence. Karina provides the guidance to build skills and develop awareness, especially focused on time and money. Karina has shown skills to meet our son at his functioning level and develop effective plans to move forward. Karina’s guidance also supports our family and others working with our son to effectively practice life skills. We have seen significant positive changes from her interventions and we feel fortunate to have the opportunity to work with her and her staff.” 

Sharon R., Boulder, CO

Learn Whether Your Child Is Performing Age-Appropriate Activities of Daily Living and Instrumental Activities of Daily Living At Home

If you have any questions about whether your child is completing age-appropriate activities of daily living and instrumental activities of daily living at home, browse our parent checklist below or contact us to set up a consultation today!

Activities of Daily Living – Parental Checklist

2-3 Years
  • Toilets with assistance
  • Takes off shoes and socks
  • Dresses and undresses with assistance
  • Uses fork and spoon
  • Drinks from an open cup
  • Puts toys away with assistance
  • Brushes teeth with assistance
  • Washes and dries hands
4-5 Years
  • Toilets independently
  • Puts socks and shoes on
  • Dresses and undresses independently except for fasteners
  • Brushes teeth
  • Combs hair
  • Puts toys away
6-7 Years
  • Ties shoes
  • Zips a zipper
  • Showers independently
  • Follows a visual routine chart
  • Tidies playroom or bedroom independently
  • Makes bed
  • Packs bag for school
  • Tells time on a clock
  • Completes up to 20 minutes of homework
  • Prepares a basic meal (sandwich, cereal)
  • Knows the worth of each coin and decides how to spend their money
8-9 Years
  • Performs chores that take up to 30 minutes
  • Manages up to an hour of homework completion independently
  • Understands the concept of money management (saving for a desired object) and can plan how to earn money
  • Can make change with coins and dollars
10-13 Years
  • Does laundry
  • Plans and prepares a meal
14-18 Years
  • Fills out a check
  • Manages a bank account
  • Applies and interviews for a job
  • Keeps a calendar and start to help make appointments

Skills 4 Life Occupational Therapists can help your child meet these ADL or IADL developmental milestones to increase their independence.

Our therapists will help your child become independent in these tasks by first improving upon the foundational fine motor, gross motor, and executive function skills required to complete the task, including: 

  • Bilateral coordination for tying shoes, zipping a zipper or cutting their food with a knife.
  • Balance for dressing and undressing or showering
  • In-hand manipulation for manipulating a toothbrush, tying shoes, or combing their hair
  • Planning skills for breaking down a multi-step task such as laundry, preparing a meal, or preparing for a job interview
  • Time management skills for completing routines, managing homework, or making appointments on their own
  • Creating a routine by developing a behavior/chore chart or a visual morning/afternoon routine chart.
  • And so much more!
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