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Finding effective teaching and learning strategies
Teacher with puppet in class

There has been an increase in the number of children in the UK with CLDD. This increase is mainly attributed to progress in medicine that enables children to survive after birth and to live longer.

The Department for Education (DfE) identified that educators were finding it difficult to find effective teaching and learning strategies to meet the needs of children and young people with CLDD.

The learning needs of children with
complex learning difficulties and disabilities

The learning needs of children with CLDD are complex. Many are disengaged from learning activities and do not respond to teaching strategies that would engage other children with special educational needs
and disabilities.

Children with CLDD need personalised programmes related to their complex difficulties and disabilities, that build on their strengths, however small these may seem.

personalised learning
Close up of a girl watching  her
                  teacher using a puppet

The DfES commissioned the Specialist Schools and Academies Trust (SSAT) to explore how to develop personalised learning for children with CLDD.

The research team worked alongside educators, families and their multidisciplinary colleagues in 96 schools, including special, mainstream, primary, secondary and early years settings.

The Research Project

The Research Project developed three resources. These consist of:

1. Complex learning difficulties and disabilities briefing packs
The profile of learning difficulties associated with a range of CLDD, for example, Fragile X Syndrome or maternal drug use. These enable educators to have a clear understanding of a child's difficulties and disabilities.

2. The engagement profile and scale
A classroom profiling and monitoring tool which enables educators to observe, record and chart the engagement in learning.

3. The inquiry framework for learning
Support for educators to explore and develop multidisciplinary personalised learning pathways under 12 different 'inquiry areas'.

Observing engagement

Watch this video of Alice in a high-interest activity. Take a look at the engagement chart linked to on the previous slide and make a note of anything you see or hear which indicates she is engaging.

The teacher's commentary will give you some clues and additional information.

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