Total Communication

Total Communication Environment

Manor Green is committed to building and maintaining a Total Communication Environment for our students.

We endeavour to discover the right combination of communication methods for each individual student to enable them to communicate effectively, develop their understanding and improve their interaction with others.

We use a multi-modal approach including speech, facial expression and body language: objects of reference, Boardmaker symbols and Makaton signing: low and high tech Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) devices.  AAC equipment is prescribed for our students by the Speech and Language Therapy team (SaLT) and forms an integral part of our Total Communication Environment. Our staff ensure that every student can always access their communication system.

All teaching and learning staff attend our 50 OPPORTUNITIES TO COMMUNICATE training designed to provide a basic understanding of Makaton signing with clearly taught signs of the vocabulary generally used in school. The range of Makaton signs is further developed on a weekly basis through our Sign of the Week and introduced via additional vocabulary relative to new topics etc.                  

Our classroom staff have high but realistic expectations of their students and recognise the importance of providing opportunities to communicate for students at all levels throughout the day. Staff understand the importance of using Makaton signing, symbols, written word, pictures or photographs and objects, where appropriate, to increase the impact of their message and to aid the student’s understanding.

As part of our universal services, all classrooms are equipped with a wall mounted Visual Timetable, a Communication Tower and a Sign of the Week display area. We provide an environment conducive to learning with the right lighting and reduced noise levels, wherever possible, especially for our students with visual and/or hearing impairment.

Our Total Communication Policy can be found here.