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  • Using objects, pictures, photos or symbols, present them visually to the pupil, point to one and then the other, saying the name.  The pupil has to indicate ‘yes’ when you get to the one they want.
  • Vary the number – starting with two.
  • Use a cardboard square in a bright colour to emulate the highlight on a computer programme and put it round the picture as you go through the list.
  • Use a torch to highlight each picture in turn in a darkened room.
  • Put the pictures on a dark Velcro background or attached to a dark piece of card.
  • Use an E-tran frame or similar and highlight each choice with a square of card.
  • Print pictures out in the corners of large pieces of paper.  These can be put in plastic pockets or bound into a book to use as a communication book.
  • Print out pictures on overhead projector film (the sort that will go through the printer) and use it in a similar way.
  • Do a class activity using larger pictures, symbols or objects.  You talk through the list and the pupils indicate ‘yes’ when you get to the one they want.
  • Use a Step by Step sequential voice output advice.  The pupil can scroll through the choices using a switch and stop when they get to the one they want.
  • Use timing games on the computer where you have to press the switch when the picture appears rather than to make it appear.  This is quite a cognitive jump for some pupils and is the first step on the way to being able to scan.
  • Play games using two switches and appropriate software.  A staff member has the switch that moves the scan along, the pupil presses their switch when they get to the one they want.
  • If you can get hold of one, use a pointer board to make choices, play games etc.  These are large pieces of equipment with a pointer on the front which can be made to move in a circle by a switch and stopped at the chosen time.  Pictures, symbols etc can be attached to the front when the device is standing upright but they can also be put flat on the floor and objects put on them.
  • If the pupil is using a simple voice output communication aid such as a 4talk4 or a Tech Talk 8, you can prompt them to choose the correct cell by talking through the choices as above.
  • Ask the pupil to use a single message aid to indicate the ‘yes’ or ‘that one’.
  • Put coloured mats on the floor and talk round them to allow pupils to choose where to stand ‘The red one’, ‘The yellow one’ etc.
  • Make up games where a verbal pupil talks through choices for the others to choose.  This may work best if one of the choices is very obvious so that there is unanimity on the ‘yes’.