Learning life skills at @GiantEagle

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I’ve written about this before but I’m going to write about it again.  I really feel strongly about trying to use everyday activities as a chance to teach my 3 boys with #autism important life skills.

We have some wintery weather blowing in soon and I wanted to pick up a few items at the grocery store, in case we get snowed in.

I grabbed Elliott and we headed off to our local Giant Eagle.  I swear it’s like we live at that store. 

Anyway, Elliott is 6 years old, has aspergers and loves learning new things.  Whenever he comes with me to the store, I always make sure to let him practice things like making good food choices, working within a budget, ringing up the groceries in the self-checkout and even bagging the groceries afterward. 

Some might be wondering what the point is.

That pretty easy to answer.  The point is that he’s gaining real life experience in a very important life skill. He’s going to need to know how to do this on his own eventually. 

The way I see it, it would be a crime not to take advantage of his eagerness to learn and desire to help.

During today’s trip, Elliott was ringing things out while I was bagging them up. When it came to the bananas, they have to scanned and weighed a little differently.  One of the cashiers that sorta floats around making sure no one else needs help, took it upon herself to teach Elliott how to manually enter the produce.

He was able to duplicate what she taught him and use that new knowledge on the next batch of bananas that needed scanned and weighed. 

He did a fantastic job and I was really impressed with the cashiers willingness to walk him through what he needed to do and tell him how good of a job he did, instead of trying to rush him though our cart of groceries and get us out the door.

This is one of the reasons I really loves hoping at Giant Eagle.

Taking the time to allow Elliott to get hands on experience might seem pointless to some but I see this as one step closer to his independence. 

Every skill he learns and masters now is one less that he has to learn in the future. 

I strongly encourage everyone to embrace these opportunities to teach. After all, you are your child’s most important teacher. 


Rob Gorski

Full time, work from home single Dad to my 3 amazing boys. Oh...and creator fo this blog. :-)
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