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Communication Support for 0-25s with Complex Needs course outline

Session 1:  What is communication?

  • Discuss the development of early communication skills
  • Share a framework of stages from pre-intentional to intentional communication

Session 2:  Creating Communication Friendly Settings

  • Explore what a Communication Friendly Setting looks like and why this is important
  • Know best practice in terms of using Objects of Reference

Session 3:  Pre-Intentional Communication

  • Explore how a pupil communicates at the pre-intentional stage
  • Discuss the appropriate adult-pupil interaction at this stage
  • Consider how to extend a pupil’s play/exploratory learning skills
  • Share an assessment of how pupils explore objects and how this promotes future learning

Session 4:  Anticipating the Event

  • Identify anticipatory behaviours
  • Outline the development of Joint Attention
  • Discuss the appropriate adult-pupil interaction at this stage
  • Consider how to signal clear routines
  • Reflect on appropriate play/exploratory learning activities at the Anticipating stage of development

Session 5:  Intentional Communication

  • Assessment of Intentional Communication
  • Discuss opportunities for choice making and how to develop a pupil’s skills in this area
  • Consider support for a pupil who does not like choices or changes

Session 6:  The link between play/exploratory learning and language

  • Explore the close link between play (younger pupils), exploratory learning skills (older pupils), with the development of symbolisation and language .

Session 7:  Total communication

  • Consider the nature of Total Communication
  • Best practice in terms of using signs and symbols
  • Outline Communication Passports as a way of sharing key information to support a pupil

Session 8:  First Messages and linking it all together

  • Explore different types of messages as a way of extending pupils’ communication skills
  • Discuss the appropriate adult-pupil interaction with the intentional communicator
  • Consider the role of non-verbal communication
  • Work in a small group to devise a poster that summaries aspects learnt on the course
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