Shows and conferences · Special Education

Patoss (virtual) conference 2020

If we're connected on social media or you've been reading my blog for a while, you may know my time has been limited over the past couple of years while I'm undertaking my doctoral study. This has sometimes meant I've had to miss a course or conference I'd otherwise have attended due to study commitments… Continue reading Patoss (virtual) conference 2020

Executive Function · Skills for school · Special Education

Working Memory

Often, the first time parents hear the term Working Memory (WM) is when their child undergoes assessment for learning difficulties. Teachers generally understand that a student's WM dictates the relative ease or difficulty with which they 'hold' information for short periods of time, say to follow classroom instructions, write and spell accurately or complete a mathematical… Continue reading Working Memory

Raising awareness · Shows and conferences


A short report on recent training, some useful links and an infographic interactive factors framework for DCD/dyspraxia

Language and literacy skills · Skills for school

Last questions!

I asked recently what sorts of blogposts people would like to see, and one of the responses related to question words. This is a great topic, and I've decided to deal with it in three separate articles. The first relates to spelling  and the second to using questions to develop reading and listening comprehension skills.… Continue reading Last questions!

Raising awareness

Sense of Sensory

Updated for Autism Awareness Week 2018. As with all my infographics, this one can be downloaded for printing. There's a link at the bottom of the page. It’s completely free, but please credit Sarah Gillie - Beacons Unique Download here More infographics here More posts related to awareness-raising can be found here You can share… Continue reading Sense of Sensory

Special Education

What’s the point?

A few thoughts on targets to start the new calendar year

Language and literacy skills

Tools to tackle spelling

Infographic with tips on tackling spelling

Early Years · Language and literacy skills

5 phonics games

5 games and activities to develop phonics skills

Mathematics and problem-solving skills

When numbers don’t add up

There seem to be two camps for maths: those who can't stand it, and those who can't understand why it's not as easy as 1-2-3...

Early Years · Executive Function · Language and literacy skills

8 ideas to promote listening skills

Listening skills, like any others, often need to be explicitly taught.

Shows and conferences

The Welsh Autism Show

A rather overdue round-up of my day at the Welsh Autism Show

Shows and conferences

6 software solutions

Half a dozen helpers for inclusive education

Raising awareness

Dyslexia Awareness Week

A few thoughts on raising dyslexia awareness.

Executive Function · Language and literacy skills · Raising awareness

Supporting visual strengths and needs

For certain students, traditional teaching methods are not always sufficient, and sometimes not appropriate, no matter how sensitively planned and delivered. This may be for many reasons, including physiological, developmental and neurological differences. Some students, including many with with ADHD, autism and specific learning difficulties such as dyslexia, have what is known as a 'spiky'… Continue reading Supporting visual strengths and needs

Raising awareness

DLD Awareness Day

It's DLD Awareness Day...

Early Years · Executive Function · Language and literacy skills

Classroom visuals and displays

A few ideas on maximising the impact of posters and other classroom displays.

Language and literacy skills

Reading Comprehension and Dyslexia/SpLDs

How dyslexia can affect reading comprehension and some strategies and ideas to support skills development

Language and literacy skills

Reading development

Support ideas from first signs of decoding, through phonics to reading whole books.

Language and literacy skills

Early reading difficulties

Continuing the theme of recent blogs on literacy acquisition, here we focus on symbol-sound (grapheme-phoneme) correspondence and early reading. Often, children's first realisation that symbols have meaning will be when they begin to recognise familiar shop signs. They may not be able to read, but they make associations with frequently seen logos. You know the… Continue reading Early reading difficulties

Raising awareness

Warning signs in the Primary Classroom

What to look out for and how to support learning needs in the primary classroom