How to make a Coreboard

Core boards are tools used in augmented and alternative communication (AAC) with students who have difficulty with verbal speech. They feature a grid of symbols, words and phrases which represent concepts. Evidence (and experience) shows them to be invaluable in supporting communication for our SEN learners.

Eloise Bromwich, from the Tower Hamlets Speech and Language Therapy team, has developed a Core board for use across Tower Hamlets schools. Eloise demonstrates how to turn the resources into a functional low-tech AAC device. High Tech communication aids, such as Proloqu and TD Snap, use the same principle. Putting a low-tech device into practice before implementing higher-tech AAC is usually a good way of introducing the concepts.

Eloise demonstrates how to make the core boards below.

Thanks Eloise!

Becoming Word Aware at Osmani Primary School

Linda Hall and Tracey Grant from the Language, Literacy and Communication Team led training on Word Aware, a structured whole school approach to promote the vocabulary development of all children. Focused on whole class learning, the resource is of particular value for those who start at a disadvantage – including children with Developmental Language Disorder, Special Educational Needs and those who speak English as an additional language, but it will extend the word learning of all students.

Practical, inspiring and fun ideas were explored that can be easily applied by busy classroom practitioners to develop both spoken and written vocabulary.

Remi Atoyebi (Headteacher), Helen Vail and Tracey Grant (Language, Literacy and Communication Team Learning Advisory Service Advisory teacher for inclusion).

Contact linda.hall@towerhamlets.gov.uk for further information if you are interested in booking this training for your school.

5min PPT: #NAPLICResources (9)

Here is our latest PowerPoint from our 5 minutes for Inclusion Series

We wanted to showcase some of the great information, resources and advice available from the NAPLIC website to support communication in your classroom. NAPLIC is a national organisation of professionals which supports language and communication development. We hope you find it useful.

Download the PowerPoint below.

Down Syndrome Day 2022

Awareness Week 2022 – March 21st to March 25th

What does inclusion mean to you?….

The Learning Advisory Service (formerly SLS) teamed up with the Half Moon Theatre to celebrate Down Syndrome Day in  2019 and also in 2020 – just before Covid shut the project down. But we still managed to have great fun!

This years focus is, rightly, on inclusion.  We’re all missing out if everyone isn’t included.

We’d love to hear how your school is celebrating Down Syndrome Awareness Week for 2022.

We really like this website for great ideas for supporting your child at home. Click on the picture to view the video clip.  This one is all about making flash cards to support literacy:

November 24th is No Pens Wednesday

What is No Pens Wednesday?*

It is a national day dedicated to speaking and understanding language which takes place in schools and settings annually. Click on the picture above, or link below to sign up and get lots of ideas to try in your class. There are ideas for Early Years, Primary and Secondary.

Why take part?

Speaking and understanding language are often overlooked in the UK education system in comparison to written language skills. However, as with literacy and numeracy, schools can play a crucial role in developing children’s skills in this important area.

No Pens Day Wednesday puts speaking and understanding language in the spotlight. Through a day of fun and engaging activities, schools and
settings can:

Raise awareness of the importance of speaking and understanding skills with staff, children and families.

Improve children and young people’s speaking and understanding skills and increase their engagement in lessons.

Support their curriculum’s focus on speaking and understanding language, and develop staff skills and confidence in teaching speaking and understanding skills.

Identify children who may have speech, language and communication needs and provide additional support.

Why is it so important?

Language levels at age two predict reading, writing and maths ability when children start school.

As many as 50% of children in some areas of social disadvantage start school with delayed language. Without early support, these children may struggle to catch up with their peers.

In Primary School:

Children who have difficulties speaking and understanding language are at a higher risk of behavioural, social and emotional difficulties in childhood and through adolescence.

More than 90% of children who have persistent language difficulties at age 5 have literacy difficulties at age 15.

In Secondary School: 

Good communication skills are rated as the most important employability skills needed for young people entering their first job – from a survey of schools, employers and politicians.

Up to 88% of long-term unemployed young men may have speech, language and communication needs.

*taken from the ICAN guide to the day

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