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Signs of SLI - in the classroom: A film for educational professionals


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Signs of SLI: A film for educational professionals

This slide show accompanies the RALLI campaign film called ‘Signs of SLI’.

The film describes possible signs of SLI in the classroom and we hope it will be useful for teachers and SENCos. Please feel free to use this slide show if it is helpful for developing staff awareness of SLI and discussing children in your own school within inservice sessions and staff meetings. A suggested format would be to use the slide show along with the film as follows:
Slides 1-4
Show the RALLI ‘What is SLI?’ film (3mins 25sec) at slide 4
Slide 5
Show the ‘Signs of SLI’ film (7mins 11secs) at slide 6. Slide 6 also shows the 3 main types of indicators of SLI with some examples.
Slides 7-10
Of course this can be adapted to best suit your school and audience (however the RALLI logo should only be used with the original slides). You can click on the links on the slide show to take you to the films on the RALLI channel.

We would welcome any feedback about the film and slides and hear about what else you would like from RALLI: Please add your comments on the channel or email

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Signs of SLI - in the classroom: A film for educational professionals

  1. 1. SIGNS OF SLI A slide show for education professionals- to accompany the RALLI film: ‘Signs of SLI’
  2. 2. Why is the ‘Signs of SLI’ film relevant to teachers?• Approximately 3% of the population have SLI (a similar prevalence to dyslexia & far more common than autism).• Therefore there is approximately one child in every classroom with SLI, but since this condition is relatively unknown, many children’s difficulties go unrecognised.• SLI can have a major impact on a child’s learning• Teachers are in a key position to spot possible SLI• Diagnosis can lead to reduced teacher/pupil frustration and increased success in teaching/learning
  3. 3. Background: What is Specific Language Impairment?• View ‘What is SLI?’ on the RALLI channel
  4. 4. Background: What is Specific Language Impairment?• Key points after viewing the ‘What is SLI?’ film: • Mismatch between language skills and other abilities, can have strengths in other areas • Expressive language difficulties • Receptive language difficulties – harder to spot • Speech sounds can be ok • SLI is a hidden impairment • Actions or behaviours can be misinterpreted • Identifying SLI and supporting the child can have a significant impact on a child’s life
  5. 5. ‘Signs of SLI’• View ‘Signs of SLI’ on the RALLI channel:The film includes the 3 types of signs of SLI:1. Behaviours/ actions in the classroom2. Spoken language or written language3. Teacher’s own response e.g. frustration
  6. 6. ‘Signs of SLI’1. A child’s behaviours that could be indicators of SLI: • Doesn’t say much in the classroom • Doesn’t do what is asked of them • Avoids or may have difficulties starting class work or homework • Is distracted – particularly when there is a lot of listening or talking • Appears forgetful – appears not to remember what has been covered in lessons or what has been told to do • Responds unexpectedly to instructions • May look around and copy others’ actions • May copy others’ written work
  7. 7. ‘Signs of SLI’2. Language errors that could be signs of SLI include: • Explanations are difficult to understand - though his/her speech sounds may be clear • Errors with spoken (and written) grammar such as word order or tenses • Problems with vocabulary – learning, understanding and using • NB: These expressive difficulties may be more noticeable than receptive difficulties • NB: Each child with SLI has different strengths and difficulties within talking and understanding language
  8. 8. ‘Signs of SLI’3. Teacher’s own response to a child- such as frustration because e.g.: • A child is not doing what he/she has been asked to do • The teacher has repeated instructions many times • The child seems not to be listening or may have switched off • The child hasn’t done work or homework
  9. 9. ‘Signs of SLI’: Summary• You may spot behaviours, language or written language difficulties that may indicate SLI• Behaviours due to SLI can easily be misinterpreted• You may wish to consider whether pupils having difficulties with learning in your classrooms are showing signs of SLI.• See the RALLI campaign channel on YouTube for more films on SLI, links to helpful organisations and links to other useful slides.
  10. 10. RALLI By RALLI:Dorothy Bishop, Becky Clark, Gina Conti-Ramsden, Courtenay Norbury & Maggie Snowling RALLI logos only to be used on RALLI materials as authorised by RALLI members above