The Intensive Interaction Classroom Guide : Social Communication Learning and Curriculum for Children with Autism, Profound and Multiple Learning Difficulties, or Communication Difficulties book cover
1st Edition

The Intensive Interaction Classroom Guide
Social Communication Learning and Curriculum for Children with Autism, Profound and Multiple Learning Difficulties, or Communication Difficulties

ISBN 9780367773304
Published September 21, 2021 by Routledge
184 Pages 6 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

This book is a practical guide to implementing the Intensive Interaction Approach in a school setting and provides essential technical support to teachers and practitioners from nursery to Post-16 who want to embed it into their classroom practice. Geared mainly towards supporting children with communication and social-communication difficulties arising from autism or learning difficulties, the principles apply equally to students of all levels of cognitive ability who struggle with social situations and emotional or sensory regulation.

The Intensive Interaction Classroom Guide brings together contributions from experienced teachers, teaching assistants, and headteachers, who reflect on their practice and share practical tips to facilitate social-communication development within a nurturing classroom environment. Offering practical advice on curriculum and pedagogy and drawing on case studies, authors address key themes on a practical level, while grounding their discussions theoretically and methodologically.

Filled with practical advice and techniques, this book will be essential to anyone working in classroom settings with students who experience social-communication difficulties or need a nurturing approach to emotional well-being.

Table of Contents


Dave Hewett

1 Introduction

Amandine Mourière and Pam Smith

2 The Story of Intensive Interaction

Dave Hewett

3 What Do Students with Autism and Learning Disabilities Need to Learn?

Pam Smith

4 Intensive Interaction as a Teaching and Learning Approach

Amandine Mourière

5 My Journey to Intensive Interaction in the Early Years Foundation Stage

Rhianne Richards

6 Developing a Whole-school Approach to Using Intensive Interaction to Promote Social Communication and Well-being

Debbie Stagg

7 Intensive Interaction within the General Communication Curriculum

Lana Bond and Inga K. Serafin

8 Intensive Interaction within our Holistic and Child-centred Approach at Brøndagerskolen

Sanne Laudrup and Pernille Hasseriis Noach

9 Developing the Fundamentals of Communication Through Free-flow Play

Julie Cassidy and Katy Snell

10 Intensive Interaction and Birth Process Central Curriculum Access

Sue Lowry and Bec Anderson

11 Touch: The Cement that Binds Us

Julia Barnes

12 Management Issues: Ensuring a School is Intensive Interaction Friendly

Anne Adams

13 Ensuring Access to Intensive Interaction through Education Health and Care Plans

Lucy Hankin

14 Getting It Right with Recording Intensive Interaction

Ian Harris and Pam Smith

Appendix 1: Video observation sheet

Appendix 2: Summary of observations

Appendix 3: A value charter for schools

Appendix 4: Intensive Interaction: new development form

Appendix 5: Style/technique list



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Amandine Mourière is a freelance autism and learning disability consultant and a Team Leader at the Intensive Interaction Institute.

Pam Smith is the autism support teacher and Intensive Interaction Coordinator at two Surrey special schools.


"Embedding Intensive Interaction at the heart of a school’s educational, pastoral and care provision should be seen as a vital element in meeting our children’s special educational needs. This book offers reflective, insightful and practically useful perspectives and resources that can significantly help in this process. Setting each individual child at the very centre of their own social and communicative development is what Intensive Interaction undoubtedly delivers; this book will help schools and teaching staff alike to more effectively meet that challenge." - Graham Firth, Intensive Interaction Institute Team Leader and Founding Director

"Intensive Interaction IS communication, and this book illustrates this very clearly. In the 70s, when I started in SEN, we quickly realised behaviour modification was not right for our students. We began using music and dance, symbols and timetables, plus social stories. We also began to realise how much our students – and their families – could teach us! Maybe this was the beginning of II…which has now been refined to the professional standard illustrated by the many contributors to this book. Importantly, it has not lost any of its spontaneity or its child-centred emphasis." - Ruth Buchan, former Headteacher Freemantle School

"It has been a long time since Kellett and Nind’s ‘Implementing Intensive Interaction in Schools’ did "what it said on the box" and became every I.I. Coordinator’s go-to reference, so it is great to see the arrival of 'The Intensive Interaction Classroom Guide' which gives a range of contexts to the experiences of practitioners now using Intensive Interaction in classrooms. It contains some especially helpful and current references to EYFS, ECHPs and Ofsted that both lone practitioners and coordinators in schools will find reassuring and useful." - Dr Mark Barber, Consultant in Profound Intellectual Disability and Severe Communication Impairment in Australia