On 17th October, Early Years settings in Hastings and St Leonards were invited to attend an event to celebrate the successes so far in a project to embed the East Sussex Communication Pathway Resources and support families of children identified with impoverished language or Speech, Language and Communication Needs.
The evening saw twenty one practitioners across ten settings join their Early Communication Support Workers, alongside representatives from the Children Centres and a guest speaker from the Speech and Language Therapy team. This event allowed time for all to reflect upon the successful work so far, network with each other, discuss effective strategies and activities and to look towards the next stages of the project.
Following some insightful training from Alexander MacMillan, a local Speech and Language Therapist, on identifying and supporting particular areas of language development practitioners were invited to share some of their experiences of the project to date.
“We hold regular staff meetings which include our Early Communication Support Worker and she gives us some amazing ideas for activities that support our children’s speech, language and communication. It goes without saying that she has had a huge influence on staff and been the best support in helping us to identify early stages of support we need to give to children and how to make referrals to Speech and Language when needed.”Chloe, Bears House, St Leonards
Practitioners commented on how they enjoyed the evening and that they have been using the strategies’ shared with some new successes for children within their settings being reported already. Practitioners have also said that the opportunity to explore the strategies was invaluable and they could see how it would directly relate to some of their key children.
The team would like to emphasise their appreciation of everyone’s hard work within this project and the practitioners continued commitment to supporting the children and families within their care. As such each setting in attendance was gifted with a heuristic play sensory bag and a traditional tale story sack which we hope will inspire lots of new language rich opportunities.