Children with Special Needs and Learning Disabilities
Children with special needs or learning difficulties often have difficulties with communication. Some children require speech and language therapy to improve, and others need greater intervention and perhaps the addition of some form of communication system or device. However, no matter what the level of communication difficulty, there are many ways to help most children to communicate more effectively. Even children with profound difficulties have the potential to increase their levels of communication, allowing them to initiate, respond and make choices.
Causes of Special Needs
Communication and Behaviour
Many individuals with special needs exhibit behavioural problems. These difficulties are often associated with a communication difficulties to read more about behaviour and communication – Click here to see the Behaviour & Communication
Many children have communication difficulties as a result of a genetic syndrome. There are hundreds of known syndromes, some of which are extremely rare. A genetic syndrome, may have little or no effect on communication skills, but often there are communication difficulties due to physical or cognitive delay.
Total Communication and Assistive Communication / AAC Strategies to enhance Communication
icommunicate follows the Total Communication philosophy, which tries to find any and every way possible to enhance communication. Individuals with high and complex needs can also be given the opportunity to communicate there needs and feelings, using a range on communicative tools. We also provide some Key Guidelines, which are simple tips that you can use everyday to make communication easier. These key guidlelines can help parents, students and teachers to enhance communication. Special needs schools often have a students with a diverse range of communication disorders, but there are many key strategies that can be used to improve the communicative environment. We also discuss using visuals and objects of reference, assistive communication devices (AAC), and enhancing communication to create a positive communication environment which may also impact positively on challenging and inappropriate behaviour. Click on the links below to read more:
Severe and Complex Needs
Some children have very complex needs and severe communication difficulties. There are many strategies to help these children. Click on the link below to find out more:
The icommunicate website also provides information and strategies for children and adults with Autism. Click here to visit our Autism section.
For more information about special needs and other communication difficulties, and ideas and strategies to help communication, see our Resources, or for specific fact-sheets with helpful hints about Special Needs go to the Downloads section.
For a wider range of books, click here to see our Bookshop.