1st Edition

The Effective Teaching Assistant A Practical Guide to Supporting Achievement for Pupils with SEND

By Abigail Gray, Melanie Wright Copyright 2021
    176 Pages 29 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    176 Pages 29 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Aimed at teaching assistants who work closely with children with special educational needs, The Effective Teaching Assistant: A Practical Guide to Supporting Achievement for Pupils with SEND is a practical and accessible resource tailored precisely for teaching assistants’ specific needs, which explores both the opportunities and limitations presented by their role.

    Each chapter provides both training activities and teaching resources designed to assist TAs/HLTAs in reflecting on their own experience while enhancing current practice. The chapters address key topics including

    • SEND and inclusive teaching
    • Multi-sensory teaching
    • Supporting differentiation or adaptive teaching.

    Supplemented with checklists and useful diagrams, this text is essential reading for teaching assistants, students and practitioners. It is particularly relevant for students working in undergraduate, post graduate and professional development programmes.


    1. What Do TAS Need to Know about Special Educational Needs and Disability?

    2. The Professional TA

    3. What Do Teaching Assistants Need to Know about Core Deficits?

    4. How Can TAs Support Multi-sensory Teaching?

    5. What is the Role for TAs in Supporting Differentiation or Adaptive Teaching?

    6. How Can TAs Contribute to the Graduated Approach ~ Assessment, Planning, Monitoring and Review for Pupils with SEND?

    7. What Do TAs Need to Know about Identifying Pupils with SEND? The Needs Matrix

    8. The Importance of Shared Practice


    Abigail Gray has spent more than 20 years as a teacher and school leader. She now works as an author, independent SEND consultant and SEND Expert tutor for Best Practice Network's NASENCO Award. She speaks and writes on all issues related to SEND and inclusion. Her first book, Effective Differentiation, was published in 2018.

    Melanie Wright is a practising SENCO of 15 years. She has worked across six schools in both the State and Independent sectors, from Nursery through to Sixth Form and has been part of the Senior Leadership Team for eight years. She is also a Level 7 Exams Access Arrangements assessor for GCSEs and A Levels, and completed her NASENCO and Masters in Special and Inclusive Edudation at the Institute of Education.

    "A most helpful text for assistants who so often feel that they carry the responsibility for developing the skills and learning abilities of children with the greatest needs, yet lack the training to do so effectively." - Dr Lindsey Peer, CBE, Peer Gordon Associates

    "This is a comprehensive, practical must-have book for any teaching assistant working with children with SEND." - Lorraine Petersen, Educational Consultant

    "Immediately useful therefore and long overdue…I can think of no better recommendation than that it comes from practitioners and for no more deserving group of youngsters. [A]core text for TAs who provide such vital support work for our children." - Dr Elizabeth Sidwell CBE, BSC(Hons), PGCE, FRSA, FRGS,  Schools Commissioner for England (DFE 2011-13)