Taunton Teaching Alliance
Taunton Teaching Alliance
Taunton Teaching Alliance
Taunton Teaching Alliance

Powerful Communicators Course

The Powerful Communicators course is an innovative package to support schools and Early Years settings to develop their understanding of Speech, Language and Communication (SLC) and to undertake practitioner-led inquiry. The programme will provide the underpinning knowledge of SLC and then an opportunity to critically reflect on an aspect of SLC within the school/setting and develop a line of inquiry to enhance practice or provision with the aim of improving outcomes for all children. The programme will also develop collaborative relationships to share knowledge and expertise.

The programme will be led by experienced Early Years Consultants and a Speech and Language Therapist:

Julia Nile: Early Years Consultant with over 35 years’ teaching experience working with children, parents and professionals, particularly to develop provision and practice for children with SEND. She has developed and trained practitioners for a level 3 SLC award. She has participated in a number of national working groups to develop understanding of provision for young children with SEND.
Lizzie Davies: Paediatric Speech and Language Therapist with extensive experience working with children and families. She is an experienced trainer practitioners for level 3 SLC awards. She works for the NHS and is also a Speech and language Consultant for a large inner city primary school.
Sara Bright: Early Years Consultant with over 30 years’ experience as a teacher consultant and Ofsted inspector. She has worked in a local authority developing quality improvement strategies. She works with schools and settings to develop provision and practice, she is an associate lecture for University of Worcester working with leaders to develop collaboration.


The programme is designed for Early Years practitioners, teachers and teaching assistants working in EYFS settings or schools (Reception and Key Stage 1) and is a package that includes a total of 2.5 days over two terms:


Programme Outline


Day 1 

Led by EY Consultant and a Speech and Language Therapist

* Understanding of the terminology of SLC, how the elements are different and how they all contribute and support learning

* Understanding the typical stages of development of SLC from birth to 11 years

* Understanding how observational assessment can support the identification of SLC

Gap task: Undertake an observations of a particular child, Environment Audit, use ECAT monitoring tool with a group of children

Day 2 

It will be expected that a leader from the setting will join the participant for the afternoon session

* Shared learning to understand how planned observation supported SLC

* Understanding how to use the ECAT tool to support the identification of a possible line of inquiry

* Understanding of how practitioner led enquiry can be developed in schools and settings

* Learning conversations to support developing a focus for inquiry

The afternoon session will allow each setting time to investigate the ECAT information and develop a possible line of inquiry

Gap task: Development of a practitioner led inquiry

Day 3 

* Reviewing the progress of the enquiry

* Shared learning with local practitioners who have undertaken similar inquiries