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The use of Blissymbolics in a multilingual classroom

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Västra Skolan is an elementary school in the town of Hudiksvall located in the centre of Sweden. The school has classes ranging from grade 1 to grade 6. Kom-X is a communication Centre that consists of pedagogues, speech and language therapists and occupational therapists who work together in a team with people in need of AAC. For the past six years two teachers from Västra Skolan, Annika Lindström and Jenny Berglund, have been collaborating with an occupational therapist from Kom-X, Maria Åkermark.
The purpose of this collaboration has been to develop not only a better but also a sustainable method to integrate children with Cerebral palsy who use blisssymbols in their daily communication into the primary school.
The primary school class was composed of 34 pupils with as many as fifteen different languages. Blisssymbols was just one language amongst all the others. Swedish was the language everybody had in common.
The teachers, with the support of the multi-disciplinary team from Kom-X, have worked constantly to develop the communication skills of the children with cerebral palsy both wihtin and outside the classroom.
Our shared belief that each person is a unique individual with great potential to develop in life if given the right resources has helped us to work towards achieving the same goals but from different directions. Our primary goal has been to ensure that the pupils with cerebral palsy achieve passing grades in elementary school.

Author(s):

Annika Lindström    
Västra Skolan Hudiksvall
Sweden

Maria Åkermark    
Kom-X Region Gävleborg
Sweden

Jenny Berglund    
Västra Skolan Hudiksvall
Sweden

 

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