Blog: Supporting Students with DLD
I’m Alice, a Speech and Language Therapist, and I’ve had the pleasure of working at Moor House School & College for just over 3 years.
Today, Friday the 18th of October, is DLD Awareness Day. DLD stands for Developmental Language Disorder. This means that students who attend Moor House School & College have difficulties with their understanding and use of language. As a Speech and Language Therapist, I provide specialist intervention in 1:1, group sessions and classroom support in order to support the students with their understanding of vocabulary, their ability to ‘find’ the word in their mind, their use of grammatically correct sentences, their ability to understand verbal and written information and their ability to build and sustain meaningful friendships.
I have the pleasure of working with Key Stage 4 students. The support they receive is vital in helping them develop functional communication required for life experiences such as work experience and interviews, as well as supporting them to work towards gaining qualifications.
The students here work incredibly hard and this specialist support ensures that they can access the curriculum and make progress with their language.
DLD is a lifelong disorder but our students make exceptional progress and develop strategies which will help them later on in life in order to be able to express their views, build relationships and lead fulfilling lives within the community.
Over my time here I have seen how important it is to raise awareness of DLD. It is important that people learn about DLD not only so that they understand the difficulties our student’s face in their everyday interactions but also so that they can know how best to support these students.
Some strategies which help support people with DLD are:
- breaking information down into manageable chunks
- repeating information
- supporting information with visuals
- explaining complex or unfamiliar vocabulary
- checking that they have understood what they have been told
It is immensely important that the wider community know about DLD so that people with DLD can be understood and feel that they have a voice.
Through working with the fantastic children at Moor House, I have seen the struggles which people with DLD can face. DLD is a common but hidden disorder which means that very few people have heard about it, unless they have direct experience with people with DLD.
Because I am passionate about wanting others to know about DLD, I have become a RADLD Ambassador. I hope that by raising awareness of DLD, more people will be able to help identify children who have DLD, more people with DLD can receive the support that they need and people with DLD will be shown understanding and compassion by the wider community.