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Woodlane High School

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Paget Gorman Signed Speech (System)

The PGSS system used at Woodlane is a valuable language learning and educational tool; it is not necessarily intended to be used as a means of communication although it can at times support some pupils in this way. It is particularly suitable for pupils with language impairment because it includes all of the grammatical features of English although the system can be used with pupils with a range of needs.

The system is concept based, and there are signs for grammatical markers such as plurals and tense marking. It is a complex system with a wide range of vocabulary.

PGSS is flexible enough to be adapted to support pupils with a wide range of language abilities, including some of the higher ability pupils at the school. The teacher/therapist is able to select the appropriate features of the system according to the individual pupil's needs.

Impact/benefits for pupils include but is not exclusive to the following.  PGSS supports:

  • Different learning styles since the message is reaching the brain through yet another sense i.e. kinaesthetic and visual.
  • Attention and listening difficulties as it provides visual prompts to 'cue' listening.
  • Participation and engagement in speaking, listening and learning activities.
  • Behaviour in the classroom whereby teaching staff can cue pupils to demonstrate appropriate learning behaviours.
  • Recall of verbal information when auditory memory is impaired.
  • Successful processing of language, supported by slower delivery speed used by teaching staff/adults.
  • Understanding of verbal instructions and sentences used by adults in the classroom.
  • Comprehension, storage and recall of newly taught concepts/ vocabulary e.g. key topic vocabulary in science such as 'dissolve’.
  • Conceptual learning, as signs are grouped in categories which link to each other, this in turn supports word storage and retrieval/finding.
  • Use of appropriate word order and extension of sentence structures.
  • Understanding and use of grammar as part of the school literacy programme (e.g. tenses such as past, present and future), and morphological features of English (e.g. plural -s).
  • Clarity of speech when pupils present with reduced intelligibility (i.e. unclear speech).

For further information please click here to visit the PGSS website.

If you would like to discuss PGSS further please contact the school’s speech and language therapist.