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Life skills programme

Life skills programme

Available at Totara Village, our Auckland campus residential accommodation, the life skills programme has been created to compliment the academic work our residents complete in school. It is designed to prepare students for entering the workforce and living independently.

The programme has three levels designed to follow on from one another. However, students can move up a level as quickly as they are able, or spend as much time as they need where they are before moving on.

Life skill goals are recorded and monitored in their Individual Education Plan (IEP). Achievement is measured through staff observations, conversations with students or questions relating to specific areas of learning.

The life skills programme covers:


Using an interpreter


Personal safety



Emergency procedures


Hygiene and appearance



Social courtesies

Effective communication

Learning / study skills

Money / purchasing

Community roles / responsibilities

Career exploration and planning

Resource management

Rights and responsibilities

Performance and self-assessment

24/7 weekends

Totara Village opens for up to 16 weekends a year during term time. The popular 24/7 Weekend option adds value to the weeks’ programme by letting students put their newly acquired life skills to practice.

Alternative weekends give students time to spend with their families, remaining connected with their local communities as well as opportunities to spend time with the wider Auckland Deaf Community at organised events. These skills transfer into adult life, where students need to be able to organise and participate in their own recreation.

Our residential students take increasing responsibility for planning social outings during 24/7 weekends, including which activities to take part in, travel to and from events, budgeting to cover the costs incurred, and the logistics of organising a large group of teenagers with varying ideas!

Parents are encouraged to be involved with 24/7 weekends by spending a night or weekend at Totara Village and taking part in recreational activities with their child and their peers.