Top Tips for Using Visual Supports

Using visual supports can be very effective in supporting understanding and expressive communication. How you use visual supports will be specific to each individual and this advice sheets lays down some key points that you should consider when setting up a visual support system for an individual who has a communication disorder. Click on the title below to download it:

Top Tips for Using Visual Supports

First, Then Card

A first, then card is the first step in developing a visual timetable system for your child. Visual timetables help development of all sorts of important concepts like ‘finished’, sequence vocabulary and moving on from one task to the next. They are also useful for developing independent working for children who wouldn’t otherwise cope with being left to complete a task independently. A visual timetable prepares a child for what is coming and can be used to reduce anxiety by giving warning of surprise, a change of plan or an unusual activity. Download an example of a first, then card by clicking on the link below.

First, Then Card

Working For… Card

Some children have a bit of difficulty staying focused on activities that they haven’t chosen themselves.  A useful strategy for many is to use a little reward system where the child collects tokens as they work to get a reward when they’ve finished. Download the one I use by clicking on the link below:

Working for…

You’ll need to cut out and laminate either the 3 or the 5 token card, whichever you choose to use, and the set of tokens your child likes. You’ll also need some pictures of whatever your child might like to work for. There are some general ones in the download. To stick your tokens on you can use either blu-tack or self adhesive velcro, whichever you have to hand. You can even use sellotape if everything is laminated.