What are Life Skills at PDSD?
Our Life Skills department consists of students in kindergarten through 12th grades at the Phoenix Day School for the Deaf. These classes are multi-age and based on student need. The average class size is 6 students (with a range of 4 to 8 students), providing maximum opportunity for individualization.
On average, we have two classes at each grade band (K-5th, 6th-8th, 9th-12th), working together as a department for students in K– 12th grade.
Our dedicated teachers have degrees in Deaf Education and/or Special Education and are all highly qualified and properly certified through the Arizona Department of Education. They are fluent in American Sign Language. They focus on developing language and communication skills throughout the school day, while providing academic instruction aligned with Arizona state standards. The focus is on activities of daily living and functional skills. Students apply concepts learned in the classroom during community based outings.
The students are instructed through the use of American Sign Language to support and bridge information to/from the English language. Students are provided instruction which follows the Arizona State Standards specific to their grade level. Other components that drive instruction are Individualized Education Plans (IEP), state assessment and various other school based assessments.
Students in our program receive the following services:
- direct instruction provided by a certified Teacher of the Deaf throughout the school day
- access to direct communication with deaf and hard of hearing peers their own age for communication and socialization
- access to deaf and hard of hearing adult role models
- opportunities to attend specials such as PE, Fine Arts, Technology, Sustainable Living and Deaf Studies
- support from Related Services staff as outlined in Individual Education Plans (IEPs) as needed, including: speech and auditory training, OT, PT, counseling and behavior support.
The main curriculum used within the Life Skills department is News2You.