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Mulberry Primary School

Total Communication Approach

Communication is the transmission of a message from one person to at least one other.  It can take a number of different forms ranging from early communicative behaviours such as eye gaze, vocalisations and body movements to the more sophisticated communication methods of speech and writing. Communication is a social interaction fundamental to human relationships, which underpins all aspects of school life.

Mulberry Primary School Provision for Autism supports communication impairment across all modes of communication: speech language, intonation, gesture, facial expression and other body language.

It is through communication that the student has access to education, through shared learning, discussion and exploration


Enabling students with autism to communicate spontaneously should constitute a major goal throughout their educational careers.

(Potter and Whittaker, Enabling Communication 2002)

At Mulberry Primary School Provision for Autism we promote an inclusive communicative environment which:

  • Emphasises an environment which encourages communication and functional skills
  • Enables each child to develop their understanding in order to access information about what is happening next
  • Allows all children to make decisions
  • Enables each child to communicate their needs and interact effectively with others
  • Supports and promotes independent learning and problem solving strategies.
  • Allows the development of independence skills through communication. Support learning with relevant symbols/words, visual supports and structures to ensure meaningful participation.