Students with communication difficulties need skills to communicate functionally in everyday situations, without the usual support and protection from home and school. These skills need to be explicitly taught, to enable them to become confident young adults. SmiLE Therapy is an innovative therapy designed to equip students with the skills necessary to become responsible individuals who operate at the highest level of independence that their circumstances and condition allow.
Teachers and speech and language therapists have always included functional life skills practice in their work with students. Now, for the first time, they can do so using a therapy with a proven method that has demonstrable outcomes.
This book is a practical step-by-step resource, designed to guide teachers and SLTs in the delivery of SmiLE Therapy with students who have communication difficulties due to deafness, specific language impairment, learning difficulties, autism or physical disability. It includes a clear step-by-step approach to preparing, running and evaluating SmiLE Therapy, with photocopiable resources and clear outcome measures from each module to share with parents, staff, education and health managers.
"I currently work in a school for the deaf with 11 to 19 year olds. Many of the young people I work with have additional difficulties over and above their deafness and have real difficulties interacting with people who are not familiar with their communication needs. Attending a SmiLE Therapy course last year inspired me to set up "SmiLE Groups" in my school and the response from the students has been very positive. The arrival of the manual is now the icing on the cake. I would therefore urge interested therapists and teachers to attend a course in conjunction with reading this very useful manual." — Helen Starczewski, Speech and Language Therapist, Royal School for the Deaf, Derby
"SmiLE Therapy is the product of a considerable amount of clinical experience and the authors have begun to develop a small evidence base for its effectiveness with deaf pupils at primary and secondary level, with a further study underway with autistic students. This highly practical resource will be valuable to speech and language therapists and teachers interested in developing functional life skills in their students with communication disabilities. As well as extending the SmiLE approach to a wider group of practitioners, publication of the programme brings with it the opportunity for further research investigating its efficacy with different client groups." — Dr Rosalind Herman, Language & Communication Science Division, City University, London.
"This programme does not focus solely on the mechanics of communication skills, but has a clear focus on building young people's confidence and resilience to help them develop a robust and positive self-image... Although designed for use primarily with students with a hearing impairment, I feel the materials and approach presented here would also be of value for students who have a specific language impairment or who are on the autism spectrum. This clear and accessible resource will be of benefit to many SEN teachers." — Martin Edmonds, SENCO, runs a specialist provision for students with a diagnosis of autism.
"I was particularly impressed by the emphasis the authors place on "supported generalisation"- ensuring that the skills acquired in smiLE therapy sessions are carried over into home and school life.
The smiLE test- teach test approach means that outcomes from the sessions can be easily documented, providing the practitioners with evidence of the success of the intervention.
The case studies describing the use of SmiLE therapy across various settings were interesting and informative...
The appendices and online resources are comprehensive and useful, with everything from feedback forms to communication skills checklists and letter templates to send home to families. I would recommend smiLE therapy for Speech & Language Therapists, specialist teachers and other professionals supporting children with speech, language and communication difficulties." — Suzanne Harrigan, Specialist SLT The Ear Foundation, Nottingham UK
"The manual begins with a description of background theory and tips on aspects of preparing and running modules, such as how to group students and how to structure the roleplays. Each of the modules is described in detail and checklists are provided for students and professionals to monitor the component behaviours before and after therapy. Larger photocopiable versions of the checklists and other useful resources are provided in the appendix and as an online resource...
...SmiLE Therapy is a resource that has been tried and tested by speech and language therapists working in schools over many years and has become popular with professionals." — Dr Rachel Rees, Senior Teaching Fellow and Speech and Language Therapist, University College London
"The ideas for use with different client groups help practitioners see the intervention’s usefulness with a variety of people. The inclusion of information about its relevance to parents, teachers, SLTs, and others will help users of the book consider whether the intervention is useful in their own setting. The overall theme of enabling young people to take control of their own learning supports client focused intervention, empowerment of the individual and generalisation of skills learnt." — Joanna Hoskin, Speech and Language Therapist
"This is an exciting book as it promises to end the idea that "Deaf can't" by giving responsibility back to the deaf child so that they can make their own decisions successfully. I hope every school and every parent gets a copy and uses it" — Paul Redfern, Deaf News