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Tuesday 21 Nov 2017

Augmentative Communication in the Classroom

Article by Stephanie Ekis, MS, CCC-SLP

During a typical school day, children spend time in the classroom, on the playground, in the cafeteria, and in the hallway.  It is important to provide the necessary communication tools so that they can participate to the fullest extent possible.  Make sure that your child’s communication device or picture board provides the vocabulary to promote functional communication, language and literacy skills development and social interaction skills related to school specific activities.  The ultimate goal is to increase classroom participation and learning.  Listed below are some examples of how your child could use their communication system in the classroom all day long.

Greeting Friends and Teachers

Take advantage of the few minutes before class begins to teach social skills.

Circle Time

This activity typically consists of songs, stories, learning about the calendar and weather. The primary goal of circle time is to help children learn how to sit, participate and communicate within a group.


Literacy is one of the most valuable skills a student can learn while in school.  Using the device’s speech synthesizer and visual representation of language, literacy instruction can be supported using the AAC device.

Snack/Lunch Time

Mealtime is a great time to teach choice making and social skills.  After the student has made their choice, show them how to request more of the desired snack or comment about how the snack tastes (e.g., good, yucky, etc.).

Math and Science

Many devices provide calculators, numbers, shapes, (for sequencing) and money vocabulary to support learning and participation during math and science class.


Art can help your students develop imagination, problem solving, fine motor skills, language, social skills and much, much more.

News for Home/News for School

It is important that students are able to share information about their day with others.

To learn more classroom tips for increasing participation and learning, please review the AAC in the Classroom Learning Path available on the DynaVox website.

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