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Has anyone used the Well Comm system for assessing and developing children's language skills? I am interested in using it and might use our EYPP to pay for some of it. I'd particularly be interested in hearing if anyone has used it across all age ranges as it's meant to be suitable from 6 months upwards.

 

Thanks in advance!

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I have been on a short introductory course for the Well Comm assessment and it did look very interesting and useful. Our local children's centre purchased a pack and then loaned it out to some of the settings to try. It is quite easy to use and understand, however we found it a little tricky in our setting to assess the children as the hall can get quite noisy with distractions. We tried it out on a few 2 and 3 year olds. It consists of a picture book and a book of questions/activities to ask/assess the children along with a score sheet and back up exercises to practise specifically targeting the skills that were lacking. From a practitioner's point of view it can feel strange not giving any clues when assessing a child (e.g. pointing to a picture or gesturing within an activity) a case of sitting on your hands! Also finding a quiet spot away from the other (helpful!) children and distractions is important for success. I think the idea is that the setting can provide a terms worth of intervention based on the supporting activities before referring to a SLT. We were also considering using EYPP money for it.

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Hi Stargrower

I am in a school nursery and we have been using Wellcomm for about 5 years. We use it to assess all our children on entry and also in Reception. We have found it exceptionally easy to use and above all it has a massive impact through the concise and effective intervention plans that it generates.

We find that on entry we have many children requiring intervention (if you need numbers I can get these but they are all at work) however by the end this has really turned around and we only send a few up into Reception that still require it (these are mainly SEND children who continue to need support in other areas) and a few EAL children who benefit from the repetition of the activities.

 

For us WellComm is an invaluable tool for supporting children's comprehension and expressive use of language. The new reports formats that it generates are so much easier to read and the follow up activities are all done for you. I think it would be money really well spent. If you would like to chat more about it please message me and I can send you my work number.

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Wow, thanks everyone. I love this forum so much - you ask a question and get all the answers you need!

 

Thanks apple and Jenimouse, it does sound like it's really worthwhile. I'll definitely look into it or find out if anyone else is using it locally as thumperrabbit suggests.

 

:1b

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Have you thought about group training session with a speech and language therapist as you may find this more beneficial ?

 

This was what we were planning to do, but was advised to use Well Comm :wacko:

 

We thought that training specific to our setting - we have terrible acoustics in our hall - would be more beneficial to our group. We were advised it would be better in the long-term to use well-com. Personally I not sure which is would why I would like to know more about it.

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We have been using Wellcomm in our nursery (3m - 5y) across all age ranges since September and i love it! We have one staff member who carries out the assessments which she films so we can look back at development. The main thing for us was how it highlights the younger children who may be at risk within our baby room and provides all the activities we can do to support this.

Ordinarily we may not have picked this up until 6 months to a year later.

 

Within my last cohort tracking i have seen a sharp rise in development for speech across the whole setting, so well worth the money in my opinion.

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  • 3 weeks later...

We have been using wellcomm for about a year, and use it right the way from baby room to Preschool.

 

It is extremely simple to understand and makes everything really clear for the staff in my opinion. It's very much like "if the child scores this number, do this" so you can't really go wrong with it.

 

The local SALT here (Cheshire west) use wellcomm too so it's really useful to be able to say "they are working on wellcomm level 4" when referring a child and they will understand exactly what that means!

 

I will say that we have never used the "big book of pictures" that comes with it, as our early years adviser explained that using abstract pictures with young children can be really confusing with them. We just grab the real things, so if the assessment calls for the child to point to the cup/spoon in the picture, we just have a real cup and a real spoon for them instead.

 

However, the "big book of ideas" is fantastic for giving very simple, clear advice on what to do to support children in each section. The pages of advice also just say "section 1,2,3" etc instead of the age bracket, which means we can photocopy them for parents to use at home without the parent being miffed that their 3 year old is has something that is labelled "12-15 months"

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Seems like it's a thumbs up from those of you who are using this system.

Could I ask do you need to buy all the items to it?

Toolkit

Handbook

Big Book of Ideas

Picture Book

Score sheets & Rules

Do they all feed into each other or could any part of it be used separately? (love to have the whole lot but it is very pricey for us!)

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