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Difficulties saying what they want to and being understood

Provisions and /or strategies:

  • Model language – reflect back correct speech rather than correcting.
  • Support verbal explanations using pictures and objects of reference.
  • Repeat what the child or young person has said and add one word.
  • Label accessible equipment with photos and pictures.
  • Encourage children to work in pairs and small groups, giving opportunities to interact with those whose who can provide good language models.
  • Observe the child’s preferred way to communicate which may include non-verbal gestures and body language.
  • Organise small group or individual language sessions – adults have phonological awareness and understand the impact that processing difficulties may have on phonics acquisition, and differentiate phonics teaching accordingly. For younger children plan specific language activities to support their listening and attention skills as well as their language acquisition.
  • Allow time for the child to process and respond (10 second rule).
  • Introduce a variety of language through rhymes and songs.
  • Ensure that all attempts to speak are acknowledged and valued.
  • Use alternative methods of communicating, for example Makaton, visual signs, visual aids, aided language boards to support verbal communication.
  • If recommended by a specialist, and provided with training, use a symbol communication system. e.g. PECS.
  • Develop ways of communicating with families with English as an additional language. Meet regularly with parent carers to establish communication levels at home and share suitable advice and strategies. e.g. Makaton, ICT, communication books and boards. You may also wish to consider use of a symbol communication system such as Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS) -please seek advice from your special educational needs co-ordinator (SENCO) if needed.

Last updated 2 November 2021

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