Blog / Articles

I am often inspired to write about the situations I encounter in my work in the fields of creative communication and communities of practice.  Please feel free to browse the articles and start a conversation if you have any questions :0)

The Fruits of Reflective Practice

The main reason I promote the use of the 7 levels engagement is so staff have a shared language with which they can describe and analyse their practice.  In a recent consultancy I did for the Sheffield learning disability charity The Burton Street Foundation, one...

Musical Interaction vs Intensive Interaction

Every Tuesday I work at Wilsic Hall School in Wadworth, Doncaster.  The service is a residential secondary school for people with complex needs mainly arising from autism and learning disabilities.  My role is to offer Intensive Interaction and Musical Interaction...

What’s in it for you?

Once up on a time I believed that all practitioners (and potential practitioners of intensive interaction) would share the same motivations – to help the person they are supporting to develop fundamental communication skills or to offer experiences of social...

Intensive Interaction Recording PDF

The completed summary of all the level descriptions plus the recording sheets, baseline sheet and methodology is now available to download using the link below or on the front page of the website. Recording Intensive...

Analysing and Recording – PDF Summary

The completed summary of all the level descriptions plus the recording sheets, baseline sheet and methodology is now available to download using the link below or on the front page of the website. Recording Intensive...

Working for the eye contact

Communities of practice can operate at various levels in a care setting.  When I began working in the capacity of Social Learning Mentor at the Hesley Group, the most obvious communities of practice involved the members of staff in a particular area or on a particular...

Three Pieces of Advice – Part 3

As I explained in the other parts of this series, the first two pieces of advice to people starting an interaction with a person with a communication disability is first ask “What are the offers here?” and then join in with the offers and Do What You See.  The purpose...

Three Pieces of Advice – Part 2

In the first part of this series I explained my first piece of advice to new support workers – to observe a person’s behaviour and ask “What are the offer’s here?”.  The purpose is to open the practitioner’s eye’s to new behaviours that could be a starting point for...

Three Pieces of Advice – Part 1

Part of my role for the Hesley Group is deliver induction training to new support workers. The autistic people they will soon be caring for have a reputation for being challenging to support and so the new starters are anxious to develop a good relationship as quickly...

Storytelling and Social Learning Leadership

I am a professional storyteller and have been trained in Social Learning Leadership by Etienne Wenger and Bev Wenger Trainer.  Storytelling is the art of engaging and inspiring people and it is the skill that has most impacted on my work – being able to talk...

Experiences of Intensive Interaction and Dementia

It was quite natural for me to try intensive interaction and responsive communication as a way to connect with people with dementia. I think the first time I tried was in 2011 – at the time I was working at an autism care setting with the people that were the...

How to record Intensive Interaction: Classroom Wallchart

My previous post explained how we ascertain a baseline interaction level at Woolley Wood using the engagement profile that was introduced to the Intensive Interaction community of practice by Mark Barber and Graham Firth.  Once we have completed the baseline we can...

Recording Intensive Interaction – Baselines

In order for a recording system to have integrity progress must be compared to a baseline level.  We can use the seven levels of engagement introduced in the last post to assess our partner’s baseline level of communication ability and then use this to ascertain...

How to record Intensive Interaction

This week I looked at the statistics for my blog and noticed that the intensive interaction recording sheet post was the most popular.  I have therefore decided to post the full system for recording that we are now using at Woolley Wood.  This system was approved by...

Parents Q&A

Every Tuesday at Woolley Wood School parents have the opportunity to attend an intensive interaction training session.  Having worked with parents on a number of occasions I have found that there are a few questions that keeping coming up and I thought that it might...

Parents Q&A

Every Tuesday at Woolley Wood School parents have the opportunity to attend an intensive interaction training session.  Having worked with parents on a number of occasions I have found that there are a few questions that keeping coming up and I thought that it might...