Supporting positive practice with children and young people

Support Positive Practice with Children and Young People with Speech, Language and Communication Needs Outcome1 Understand the concept of positive practice when working with children and young people Explain how to recognise and build on the strengths of a child or young person by giving different examples of positive strategies Providing Time and Supporting OpportunitiesCircle Time allows children to build listening and attention skills and allows a set time period were children can communicate. This strategy is to provide supported communication, allowing children to talk about their interests.

It also facilitates communication between the children and their peers. By asking open-ended questions we can encourage communication. By placing a child with speech, language and communication needs at the end, the child can listen to the others and know what is expected of them when it’s their turn. Adapting Adult LanguageAdapting adult language in the setting is done every day. When talking to a child we will use language that the child can understand and adapting adult language so it is understandable for a child. Repeating what a child has said helps to model language and allow a child to feel understood and heard.

For example, ” I got a bike and a doll for my birthday”. I would say “You had a bike and a doll for your birthday, that’s great”. You can also model correct language, so when a child says, “I got doggies” I would say, “You’ve got dogs at home have you? ”. Modelling and Expanding a Child’s LanguageExpanding a child’s language can be done by starting with simple words like ‘ball’. Then talking about an object, then expanding it, like ‘blue ball’ or ‘bouncing ball’. I would always find out if I was being consistent in using the same vocabulary as the carers.

I would reinforce new vocabulary by playing games with the child, like naming objects and repeating this as often as possible. This allows for a child to reach targets, then adding to and expanding their vocabulary. For example, ‘Is that a ball? ‘ Then ‘Is that a blue ball? ‘ You can introducing other topics such as animals, toys and vehicles to expand the conversation. Adapting the Environment to Support Communication Helping children with speech and language needs can be done by using visual signs that children can understand ,like labelling areas such as ‘home corner’ or ‘quiet area’.

These signs can also inform a child of activities and equipment. Signs could even be used to show how to make play dough. Sign language can be used to help children to give them a choices. During singing, activities and stories, signing can help with vocabulary or instructions. The events of the daily routine may be useful opportunities for communication relating to the the environmental, like tidy-up time, circle time , snack time or dinner time. Having visual displays of topics or current activities to reinforces information.

Supporting and Developing Confidence and Self-EsteemBy using positive communication methods we can build a child’s interaction skills, self-esteem and confidence. I always have eye contact with the child and allow them to finish what they are saying. A child should never be labelled and we should help children to learn to talk positively, even if they have made a mistake. A child should be given lots of praise to help boost their self esteem making them more confident and willing to try. Demonstrate Specific Communication Behaviours Memory games for young children only use 3 picture cards.

You can ask what is on each card, mix up these cards, then ask the child to find the card with a car on it. This can be adapted for older children you can use more cards or word cards. If the child closes their eyes, moves the cards around, they have to put the cards back in the right order and say what is on the card when the child opens their eyes. This game not only helps with attention and concentration as well but allows for the demonstration of a variety of communication behaviours such as listening, following instructions, comprehension, looking, remembering, taking turns, subtle physical cues of body language and tone of voice.

Compare the differences between strategies based on children and young people’s strengths and abilities and those based around children’s difficulties. Strategies based on children’s strengths and abilities are chosen by what has been observed. This is the used to create child-centred based on the child’s interests. Strategies are also based on the child’s age and stage of development, so they are appropriate to that child. On the other hand, ‘BLAST’ is a strategy developed to work on the child’s communication difficulties.

The aim is to promote listening, and sound and speech-awareness in order to rapidly develop speech and language skills. ‘BLAST’ is implemented daily over a 6-week period using the same children. It involves repetition; doing the same songs and stories over the 6 weeks. Doing this allows confidence to build in the child as she gets to know the activities. The repetition of activities works on repetition and expansion of communication skills. Whereas a strategy built for a child that is based on strengths and abilities can change and be more dynamic and variable.

Provide examples of how current research evidence supports positive practice. The Communication Trust launched The Speech, Language and Communication Framework (SLCF)in April 2008. SLCF set out to develop positive practices in speech, language and communication for children in the UK. It was created with evidence and input from Education and Health sectors, along with input from Private and Public sector organisations. Part of The Communication Trust is the Hello Campaign. This aimed to make children and young people’s communication a priority in homes and schools across the country.

The campaign had a special focus on championing the needs of children and young people with speech, language and communication needs (SLCN) and their families. It’s purpose is also to raise awareness of how important speech, language and communication is across the children’s workforce, allowing practitioners the best training and expertise to support all children’s communication needs. If a child is to achieve the Every Child Matters outcomes laid out in the EYFS, their speech, language and communication needs must be met. If they are not met, it can lead to challenging behaviour, a lack of attainment and isolation.

Therefore it’s vitally important that practitioners recognise the signs of potential difficulties and know where to go for more information and support. Outcome 2 Know how to work alongside speech, language and communication specialists to use appropriate strategies and targets to support children and young people Identify and describe the different strategies and targets that can support children and young people’s speech, language and communication needs. It is important speech, language and communication needs of all children are considered.

In education, children and young people need to: Listen to and understand information they are given Make sense of concepts and ideas they are learning Learn a whole range of new words and them well Share their ideas with others and answer questions Use language to solve problems ask for help or explanations Read, write and learn to spell, interact with others and play and socialise Children with different speech and language abilities will need different support to help them to be able to do all the above. Strategies that support children and young people’s SLCN are: Speech, Language and Communication Framework’ (SLCF) – The Communication Trust 2008 SLCF set out to develop positive practices in speech, language and communication for children in the UK. ‘Better Communication Action Plan’ – UK Government 2008 An action plan to improve services for children and young people with speech, language and communication needs ‘Talk to Your Baby’ – National Literacy Trust 2009 Guidance for developing a strategic approach to speech, language and communication in the early years ‘Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS)’ – developed by by Lori Frost, M.

S. , CCC-SLP and Andy Bondy, Ph. D. 1985 A form of augmentative and alternative communication, PECS is typically used as an aid in communication for children with autism and other special needs. Using images and pictures, the system has been used with a variety of ages including preschoolers, adolescents and adults who have a wide array of communicative, cognitive and physical difficulties. Explain the process of how supportive strategies are selected and implemented to support children and young people’s speech, language and communication needs.

In the setting you can observe a child and discover their SLC strengths and weaknesses. You can build on these observations by selecting an appropriate strategy, best planned around the child’s interests. For example, you may have observed a child who has difficulty communicating their needs. If the child is interested in cars,I could put a communication strategy in place such as PECS (picture exchange communication system). I would take photographs of the cars that the child likes and exchange the real car for the photograph. This enables the child to communicate their wants and needs.

If there became a need to introduce more PECS this could indicate that the child may have more severe communication needs, and may need to be referred to a specialist. Explain own role in the process of how targets are set, monitored and evaluated along with specialist. In my role I have implemented strategies set in place by a speech therapist. I worked in partnership with the specialist to monitor the child’s progress and contributed to an overall evaluation. A child entered the setting with pre-identified SLCN and had already been referred to a Speech and Language therapist.

After assessing the child and implementing a variety of strategies for home and nursery, the therapist met with our team to shared the targets that she’d specifically set for the child in our setting. We were given a custom-made Memory Game to play with the child for 5 -15 minutes per session. The game was to give the child a chance to practice pronounce his target sounds, ‘t’ and ‘s’. The cards had pictures of objects whose names contained the target sounds. After shuffling the cards and placing them upside down on a table, the child turned over two cards at a time until he found matches for all of the cards.

As the child turned over each card, we encouraged him to say the name of the object on the card. After playing the game, we recorded our observations in the child’s record and stated if he had reached his targets. After 6 weeks, we collectively fed back our evaluation of the child’s progress in reaching his targets, to the Speech and Language Therapist. Compare different examples of how strategies and targets have been used to support children and young people with speech, language and communication needs.

Our setting has many different strategies in place because each child is an individual and they may well need encouragement / help in different areas. One child may not have started talking at three because they have been hospitalised with chronic illness and are behind in their speech. In this situation it is speaking that is a problem. The child could point to a picture of what they want to do. You can demonstrate activities before you ask the child to do them, so they have practical, visual information on the sequence of actions they need to do to get to the outcome you want.

Another strategy which would work in this situation is using visual clues and reminders, very useful in helping children follow routine and learn new words and concepts. Use pictures or photos of the children themselves doing the activities, to represent different activities in the day as a visual timetable. Pictures can also be used to help children to choose activities. Another child may have very young parents who do not use ‘social speech’ or ‘pragmatic speech’ in the home. This may mean that the child might: say inappropriate or unrelated things during conversations tell stories in a disorganized way ave little variety in language use It is not unusual for children to have pragmatic problems in a few situations. However, if problems in social language use occur often and seem inappropriate considering the child’s age, it’s useful to have strategies to make improvements because this could lead to lower social acceptance or peers avoiding having conversations with the child. The following strategies ban be used in this situation: Role-play conversations. Pretend to talk to different people in different situations. For example, set up a situation (or use one that occurs during he course of a day) in which the individual has to explain the same thing to different people, such as teaching the rules of a game, or how to make a cake. Encourage the use of persuasion. For example, ask the child what he or she would say to convince family members or loved ones to let him or her do something. Discuss different ways to present a message: Polite (“Please may I go to the party? “) versus impolite (“You’d better let me go”) Indirect (“That music is loud”) versus direct (“Turn off the radio”) Practice Conversation and Storytelling Skills

Introduce a new topic of conversation with the child. Add related information to encourage talking more about a particular topic. Provide visual cues such as pictures, objects, or a story outline to help the child tell a story in sequence. Encourage rephrasing or revising an unclear or inappropriate word or sentence. Provide an appropriate revision by asking, “Did you mean ‘Please may I have…? ” instead of ”Give me… ” Show how non-verbal signals are important to communication. For example, talk about what happens when a facial expression does not match the emotion expressed in a verbal message (e. . , using angry words while smiling). Another child may need specialist help because they have special needs but there are many things you can do in your setting to support the specialist strategies that are in place. Using PECS or Makaton. This child may be using these augmentative systems to communicate and these strategies will be embedded throughout the child’s daily routine. Slow down the rate of your speech. Simplify your language and repeat new words and ideas often. Don’t feel you have to fill in silence with lots of talking. Some children with special needs more time to think before they speak.

Make sure you leave gaps for them to fill in. Try to reduce the number of questions you ask and emphasise the important words in the sentence, the ones that carry the information, e. g. “Look, here’s the big teddy. ” Try to cue children in to what you are doing. Say their name, wait for them to look at you. You may need to model language for them by giving them a choice e. g. “Do you want juice or milk? ” Or you can repeat what the child has said to confirm you have understood them and to let them hear how the words should sound. Use simple repetitive language for familiar activities.

Comment on what children are doing in their free play sessions, and try to expand what they say by adding a few words. For example a child might shout: “Truck! ” The adult should reply: “That’s right, it’s a big, blue truck. ” Outcome 3 Be able to place children and young people at the centre of professional practice when working with children and young with speech, language and communication needs Review and identify the particular issues and implications of work setting for children and young people’s speech, language and communication. Maybe your work environment or setting is conducive to supporting children’s SLC needs.

But there may be areas of physical environment which could be adapted or improved to better meet those needs. You could see if there are areas in the setting that are too crowded, too busy, too quiet, too dark, too light, too hot, or too cold. Other issues in the physical environment to consider may be; Is the ceiling high? Does the room echo? Is it damp or does it smell musty? Are finances limited or freely available for additional, specialised resources or equipment? Are the walls able to hold display boards, posters, and information to interest children?

It may not be possible or appropriate to make permanent changes to the physical environment because the setting must work for all children’s needs. However, the routines and organisation of the setting could be changed or adapted temporarily. For example, If a room is set aside for soft play equipment and is normally a noisy, active space, the equipment could be put away and a Circle-Time could be held there, involving social speaking and conversation skills. You can create places where children can come together, be alongside and parallel with each other, create space and spaces that invite communication using props and resources.

For example, you could create a ‘Home’ area which invites role-play, interaction and imaginative, collaborative play. Set up chairs, tables, kitchen equipment, cooker, washing machine, a bed, pushchairs, dollies and combine with dress-up costumes nearby. The children will create complex scenarios as they play here and implement a variety of SCL skills to observe in the process. Other obstacles to supporting children’s SLC needs in the setting may be attributed to staff resources; Are staff able to spend as much time as they’d like with the children to support their communication?

Are there issues or implications with training e. g. limited finances, SLC awareness courses? Is there a positive sense of team-working and parent-partnership? Are staff aware of how to find professional support for children’s SLC needs? Standards of professional practice should be maintained to ensure that the staff are accessing relevant training and information to properly meet the children’s SLC needs. Even if the settings finances are low, management can facilitate regular team- meetings and deliver information freely available from organisations such as: I CAN (www. ican. org. k) – The charity that supports children with speech, language and communication difficulties. The Communication Trust (www. thecommunicationtrust. org. uk) – A campaigning voice for children with speech, language and communication needs. Afasic Cymru (www. afasiccymru. org. uk) – Supports parents and represents children and young people with speech, language and communication needs. A work setting must also value inclusion, participation, equality and diversity, in making adaptations to meet the individual SLC needs of each child, ensuring no child is isolated or excluded in the process.

Outcome 4 Understand how to work with others to support the social, emotional and cognitive needs of children and young people Explain how speech, language and communication needs can affect social, emotional and cognitive development in children and young people. I would like to use an case example in order to answer this question. A 3 year old boy has speech problems and misses whole sounds out of words. He has been to see the speech and language therapist and is working on practising a range of sounds in a fun way by doing tongue-exercise stories, ‘Mr. Tongue’ and ‘Freddy Frog’.

He is on an individual education plan where he does this for 10 minutes a day. The staff at the setting also use Makaton sign language with him. His plan contains targets such as practising sounds, concentrating on activities and using signs. Because the boy mostly communicates with gestures and pointing, his speech problems effect him emotionally and socially. Socially, even though the child has friendships, it is hard for his peers to understand what he is saying. This must be frustrating for both parties. Emotionally, he finds it hard to communicate properly which results in frustration, often leading to challenging behaviour.

Cognitively, he appears to be behind his peers, but is actually not. However, because of this misunderstanding, he often overlooked in learning situations because of people’s misconception of his ability, due to hi speech problems. Explain how social, emotional and cognitive needs can affect children and young people’s speech,language and communication. Recent research in child psychiatry has demonstrated a high prevalence of speech, language, and communication disorders in children referred to psychiatric and mental health settings for social, emotional and behavioural problems (Journal of Speech and Hearing Disorders Vol. 5 179-192 May 1990). Conversely, children referred to speech and language clinics for communication disorders have been found to have a high rate of diagnosable psychiatric disorders. It appears that social, emotional and cognitive needs and SCL problems are often interrelated. Speech & Language Therapists and Audiologists need to have an understanding of the complex interrelationships between communication disorders and social, emotional and behavioural health. This important for diagnosis, assessment, and treatment.

Research shows that children who have social, emotional and behavioural problems are at risk of developing SCL Issues. Review and report on the roles of other professionals in supporting children and young people and explain how to access additional support. Here are descriptions of various practitioner roles and responsibilities in relation to children’s speech, language and communication needs:PractitionerThe child’s key worker or class teacher is responsible on a day-to-day basis for ensuring that the child’s needs are met and that the experiences and activities offered support each child’s learning and development.

This person is responsible for planning, observing, recording and evaluating children’s learning and progression. The practitioner should undertake training and further development in order to address any gaps in knowledge and to keep up-to-date with developments in special educational needs (SEN) provision and language teaching. It is expected that the practitioner will work in partnership with children’s parents. The practitioner has a responsibility toseek advice and support from senior colleagues as necessary and to act upon their advice.

Where outside professionals are involved with the child, the practitioner is expected to work closely with them and implement their suggestions or programmes. For childminders working alone, seeking advice might involve contacting the local child-minding network coordinator. Learning Support AssistantIf a child has a statement of special educational needs, a learning support assistant (LSA) may be employed for a specified number of hours per week to support the child in the areas identified in the statement.

The LSA works under the direction of the class teacher or child’s key worker and should not be given sole responsibility for planning for, and teaching, the child. However, an experienced LSA may help to adapt materials to make them accessible to a child with speech, language or communication needs. Generally speaking, LSAs should aim to work with the child in a small group, rather than on a one-to-one basis, and should work towards increasing the child’s independence and promoting inclusion.

SENCO or Inclusion CoordinatorThe SENCO (or inclusion coordinator, in settings where this title is used to describe the member of staff who coordinates provision for children with special educational needs) has a setting-wide focus on children with SEN. They are responsible for determining the strategic development of the SEN policy and provision in the setting in order to raise the achievement of children with SEN. The SENCO or inclusion coordinator takes day-to-day responsibility for implementing the SEN policy and coordinating the provision made for individual children with SEN.

They work closely with parents and other agencies, and provide professional guidance to practitioners working with children on a day-to-day basis. Headteacher, Setting Leader or ManagerThis person is accountable to the local authority (LA), governing body or management committee. Although they may not work directly with the child, they have a responsibility to ensure that staff are fulfilling their roles in relation to meeting children’s individual needs, and that staff are properly supported, for example, by being released to have opportunities and time to attend relevant training.

Educational PsychologistEducational psychologists (EPs) are specially trained psychologists who are also qualified teachers. They work with settings to help assess children’s special educational needs and to devise programmes of intervention. They may also work at a broader level, for example, helping the setting to develop a communication-friendly environment. Where a child is undergoing statutory assessment in line with the SEN Code of Practice, an EP will be allocated to that child and will carry out a psychological assessment as part of the proceedings.

All maintained schools have direct access to an EP on a regular basis. Some settings have an EP attached whilst in others EPs may only visit where a child is undergoing statutory assessment or has been notified to the LA by Health (in the case of children with significant physical and/or medical needs). Speech and Language TherapistSpeech and Language Therapists (SLTs) are health professionals who work with children who have difficulties with speech, language and communication, or with eating, drinking and swallowing. SLTs work closely with parents and other professionals, such as Practitioners and Occupational Therapists.

Where a child is being seen by an SLT, appointments may either be clinic-based or setting-based. Therapists work with children who have a range of speech, language and communication difficulties, including language delay, hearing impairment, difficulties with sound production, autism/difficulties with social communication skills, and stammering. With parents’ permission, therapists should ensure that the child’s setting receives copies of assessment reports and speech and language programmes, in order that they can be fully implemented in the setting.

Therapists may also provide training for setting staff; for example, training in how to implement a signing or symbol support system. Specialist TeacherMost LAs have specialist teachers who work with children with language and communication difficulties. They may be known as advisory teachers for language and communication. Such teachers have undergone additional training, usually resulting in a specialist qualification. The distinct expertise of specialist teachers lies in their knowledge of how to address language and communication difficulties within an educational context.

Specialist teachers may offer advice on teaching strategies to meet specific needs, the modelling of such strategies and more formal training. They may also work at a whole-setting level, for example, helping to develop a language teaching policy. However, it is important to note that specialist teachers are not medically trained, and are not, therefore, able to offer formal diagnosis of specific difficulties, nor to intervene in medical aspects of difficulties such as speech production difficulties resulting from a medical condition.

In some LAs, specialist teachers may work only with maintained settings, in which case non-maintained settings may contact their area SENCO or inclusion coordinator for support. Additional Support There are a wide range of other professionals and organisations that can provide additional support around a child with SLC needs. As a practitioner, I could either signpost parents to the additional following services or contact them via my workplace or manager to seek information and support and maintain professional practice standards.

Social Services, Children Young People & Families Department (Local Authority) (Self or Practitioner Referral) TAC team (Local Authority) (Practitioner Referral) GP (Self Referral) Health Visitor (Self Referral) Occupational Therapist (Practitioner Referral) Special Needs Nurse (Practitioner Referral) 1Voice (Self Referral) 1Voice is a network of support and information for children who use communication aids, and their families. www. 1voice. info Afasic (Self Referral)

Afasic seeks to raise awareness and to create better services and provision for children and young people with speech and language impairments. www. afasic. org. uk British Stammering Association (Self Referral) The British Stammering Association is the only national organisation for adults and children who stammer, run by people who stammer. www. stammering. org I CAN (Self Referral) I CAN works to support the development of speech, language and communication skills in all children with a special focus on those who find this hard: children with speech, language and communication needs. ww. ican. org. uk Signalong (Self Referral)The Signalong Group is a registered charity dedicated to enabling children and adults with impaired communication to overcome difficulties at to reach their full potential. www. signalong. org. uk The National Autistic Society (Self Referral)The NAS champion the rights and interests of all people with autism and aim to provide individuals with autism and their families with help, support and services that they can access, trust and rely upon and which can make a positive difference to their lives. www. nas. org. uk

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