• Bridges Course Descriptions


    Academic Skills 

    Functional Skills:

    Systems class focuses on functional academics. Topics covered are: using the Dollar More Strategy, counting coins, making change, using the calendar, budgeting, tipping, using a calculator, reading comprehension, solving real life word problems, telling time, using the computer, reading a newspaper, and a variety of other skills that are based on IEP goals and objectives.


    Independent Living

    Daily Living 1:

    Students have the opportunity to work on skills needed to increase their independence in the area of home living. This course offers a unique hands-on opportunity for students to practice everyday household cleaning tasks, basic planning and preparing of food items, and basic hygiene routines.


    Independent Living Skills 1:

    Students in this class have the opportunity to work on skills that relate to living as independently as possible. Students will be able to practice these skills in school and/or at the district apartment site as it relates to his/her IEP. Areas covered, but not limited to, include: cleaning, cooking, accessing the community, personal safety, technology/phone skills, money skills, and volunteer opportunities.


    Independent Living Skills 2:

    Students who have demonstrated a high level of independence in the skill set identified in Independent Living 1 may be placed in Independent Living 2.  In addition to the topics listed above, students who participate in Independent Living 2 will also receive instruction on accessing public transportation and will become ADA certified through Metro Mobility to ride Anoka County Transit Link.


    Community Living:

    In this class we use the Unique Learning System that is developed by News-2-You. This curriculum covers topics including: understanding generations and where we come from, getting along with others, working in the community, recycling, balanced meals, weather and energy, tools that help us, and ecosystems. This class helps the students with communication skills, employability and self-advocacy.




    Bridges Work Program:

    The Bridges Work Program provides a variety of vocational experiences to meet the needs and ability level of all students.  Students may start at TEAM or an unpaid community work site supported by a job coach.  While at these sites, students will learn new job skills and appropriate work behavior.  When students have the necessary ability and work ethic to meet the requirements of an employer, we will look for paid, community employment opportunities.


    Introduction to Manufacturing:

    In the Introduction to Manufacturing course, students will use common woodworking tools to manufacture and design projects. The class is intended to provide theory and practice in safety, use of basic hand tools (tape measure & square) and machine operation (planer, miter box, power sander, drill, power nail gun). Some projects will be produced collectively as a group - others will be done individually. Students will have the opportunity to explore woodworking, while obtaining practical skills.


    Vocational Instruction 1:

    Bridges offers a vocational component for students who do not participate in the Bridges Work Program. Vocational Instruction is offered at the Bridges location. Instruction includes: learning to ask for help, following directions, collecting attendance, completing simulated work tasks (including large and fine motor tasks), and using adaptive equipment to operate various electrical items.


    Vocational Instruction 2:

    This class is designed for those students who are not quite ready for community employment. Students will focus on developing his/her employability and independence skills by participating in a variety of in-house tasks/jobs. In addition, students will have the opportunity for in-house, volunteer, and community-service jobs.


    Work Experience Seminar:

    The curriculum for the work experience seminar class includes:  Learning personal information (address, phone number, birth date, etc.), why work is important, employer expectations, getting along with others at the job site, asking for help, safety rules at work, safety words, taking days off from work, payroll policies, leaving your job, appropriate behavior on the bus, and appropriate activities to do while on break, and dealing with changes at work.




    Community Participation:

    Learning the public transportation options. Community awareness, volunteer and service learning experiences.



    Creative Recreation:

    This class focuses on activities that will enhance the student's knowledge of recreational hobbies and allow them to obtain skills that will benefit and enrich their lives. With the guidance of a teacher and support staff, students will gain exposure to activities such as scrapbooking, card making, basic baking/cookie decorating, and etiquette training.


    Current Events:

    In this class the students will have the opportunity to learn and discuss current events. The goal of the class is to have small group discussions and activities while building peer relationships. The content will be taught by class discussions, activities, or posted written material. In addition to current events, students will learn about important dates in history.


    Fine Arts:

    Students will make their way through history using “Art” as their vehicle. The students will have the opportunity to gain exposure to a variety of art and activities.  



    Students will learn lifelong skills to promote healthy living through physical activities / exercise. Students will be exposed to physical fitness opportunities such as: cardiovascular activities, strength training, and mobility / stretching exercises.



    Students develop a school newsletter, which is published quarterly throughout the school year. Students learn to log in to the newspaper server and set up their own file folders. They are provided an opportunity to improve their computer keyboarding skills on All the Right Type or a similar keyboarding program. The students will utilize Word to produce interview formats, Comic Life to create comic pages for photos and graphics, and type newsletter articles. In addition, students will develop organizational strategies to meet deadlines, format, and conduct interviews using th Wh-question strategy, operate a digital camera, and design collage layouts. Students are introduced to iPhoto and how to download, file, edit, and layout photos for final printing.


    Social Thinking:

    Students will learn to determine expected and unexpected behavior for an environment or situation. They will be taught to use social detective skills to make smart guesses about what a person is thinking or feeling.  Students will also learn to identify their own emotions and learn skills to regulate their emotions so they can demonstrate expected behavior. Students will practice small talk and natural conversation skills.  Additionally, students will practice breathing and mindfulness to encourage optimistic thoughts and happy moments in their lives.