How to make sure I can provide good advice and information about speech, language and communication.
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The resources here will help you reach the outcome: "I know where I can find out more to develop my own knowledge of toddlers’ speech, language and communication."
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Language for Learning training
Language for Learning provides training and resources to support all those working with children and young people with speech, language and communication needs. They provide training to the wider workforce in early years settings and schools, equipping practitioners to support children and young people effectively. There is a training for trainers programme where they train speech and language therapists and specialist teachers to deliver Language for Learning training courses in their local area.
Speech, Language and Communication Framework
This professional development tool outlines the key skills for staff working with children to support and develop speech, language and communication skills. It consists of 2 elements, a self-assessment tool and Universal level learning modules. The self-assessment tool enables practitioners to map their confidence, knowledge and skills in supporting speech, language and communication and identify areas for development. The learning modules provide opportunity for practitioners to develop their knowledge in supporting speech, language and communication. A group function is also available to enable audit of a cohort of practitioners to inform training plans.
Balanced System for Schools and Settings
The Balanced System Scheme for Schools and Settings is a whole system approach to improving outcomes for children across the range of speech, language and communication needs for any setting that supports children. The framework enables a setting to understand existing need and provision for speech, language and communication and develop provision to address the gaps. The framework supports a setting to demonstrate impact of the support for speech, language and communication.
NHS Services and support for parents
NHS website with details for how to find a GP, Health Visitor and child health clinics in your area
Language for Learning
Language for Learning provides training and resources to support everyone working with children and young people with speech, language and communication needs.
Developed in 2000 by a specialist teacher and a speech and language therapist, Language for Learning is a Worcestershire joint health and education non-profit making project managed by the NHS service.
Language for Learning provides training to the wider workforce in early years settings and schools, equipping practitioners to support children and young people effectively. A wide range of training courses are available from half day courses to three day intensive courses. Language for Learning also has a resource catalogue full of practical resources and ideas to support children in their setting.
Visit the website to find out more
Cost: Training commissioned by schools and settings
Worcestershire Workforce Audit
Speech Language and Communication Needs (SLCN) Self-Evaluation Audit for practitioners in settings and schools.
Word Aware training
Word Aware is a fast-paced, fun and interactive workshop style day, which will leave you well equipped to start Word Aware in your schools and settings or with individual children. You will leave the day with lots of practical ideas on how to develop vocabulary in your school or setting.
Best Start in Speech, Language and Communication
This e-learning programme has been developed in partnership with Health Education England e-Learning for Healthcare, Public Health England and the Department for Education. Best Start in Speech, Language and Communication outlines the importance of the development of children’s speech and language skills for health visitors working with pre-school children and their families.
What Works database
The Communication Trust worked with the Better Communication Research Programme to develop the What Works database of evidenced interventions to support children's speech, language and communication. What Works is endorsed by the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists. It supports practitioners to deliver evidence-informed interventions and approaches to support children and young people with speech, language and communication needs.
Elklan courses are delivered by licensed tutors across the UK. The evidence-informed courses are aimed at practitioners to support their knowledge about how to support toddler's speech, language and communication. Elklan have also developed a range of courses for parents.
Development Matters supports all those working in early childhood education settings to implement the requirements of the EYFS and support the early learning of young children. It can be used as part of daily observations, ongoing assessment and to inform planning. It can also be used to make best-fit summative judgements and with parents in relation to whether a child is showing typical development, is at risk of delay or is ahead for their age. The age and stage bands suggest a typical range of development in many areas including Communication and Language; Personal, Social and Emotional Development and Literacy. The development statements have not been designed to be used as a checklist but can highlight areas to focus on for developing key skills.
The WellComm Assessment is for use with any child aged 6 months to 6 years and enables practitioners to evaluate children's language skills, draw up a detailed profile and identify children at risk of having difficulty in developing language skills. It identifies those children who need setting-based monitoring and support and those who need referral to specialist support services. The screen is completed through observation, discussion with families and screening by asking children to carry out a variety of tasks ensuring that results obtained and conclusions drawn are more accurate than using one approach alone.
The WellComm Big Book of Ideas has been designed for use following a WellComm assessment of any child aged 6 months to 6 years. It includes general strategies as well as very specific activities to develop and improve children's speech and language skills and can be implemented by any early years practitioner or parent using toys and items that can be found in settings or at home. The activities are used to develop the particular skills highlighted for support in the assessment - this means that the activities delivered are specific and appropriate to the individual child language development stage and can be used in the setting or at home.
Training videos are included in the toolkit.
I CAN Online Short Course: An introduction to speech, language and communication
This online short course is free and a great place to start learning about children and young people’s speech, language and communication development. It looks at how you can support the development of these skills on a day-to-day basis in your setting, and how to spot children and young people who might be struggling to develop these important skills.
The course is tailored for the needs of practitioners working across all the different education phases. You have the option to access four different pathways – early years, primary, secondary or further education so you can choose which pathway is most relevant to your area of work.
Communication Friendly Spaces Approach
The Communication Friendly Spaces Approach focuses on the role of the environment in supporting speaking and listening skills, emotional well-being, physical development and general engagement. The approach promotes learning environments that reflect the aspirations of individual organisations; regularly change according to the needs of the children using them; inform how learning happens; and reflect who and what is valued. It uses an evidence and inquiry-based learning approach to help children develop emotional security and skills across many areas.
Signs and Symbols
Widgit provides symbols that can be used to support communication making information, documents and resources to be more accessible and inclusive. The symbols can be used for a variety of purposes such as creating communication books to share information; visual timetables to support understanding of structure and routine; task boards to support independent learning; pictures to develop vocabulary and to support children learning English as an additional language.
This website has information to support your understanding of how to use symbols including training resources, events and links to a network of organisations around the UK who offer advice and support.
There is also information for parents and carers to help them understand how they can use symbols to support their child.
Every Child a Talker
The materials are designed to support you to develop high quality language provision in your setting. The guidance helps you to create developmentally appropriate, supportive and stimulating environments in which young children can enjoy experimenting with and learning language. It can be implemented in Early Years settings, including childminders.
BBC Something Special
Something Special uses songs, rhymes and visual humour with Makaton sign language to help practitioners and parents learn how to support communication with signing in a fun and exciting way.