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Symbols Making Sense: A literacy project to support reading and comprehension

  • Sylvia Shepherd Clarke

‘Symbols Making Sense’ is a reading scheme designed specifically for young people with a broad range of communication/learning needs. The scheme is the result of many years of research into developing reading skills where there may be either a short or long term difficulty in developing word recognition.

The scheme is supported by Makaton symbols and currently consists of a comprehensive teaching manual ‘A Guide to using Symbols Making Sense’, with by 10 introductory books, Books A-J. (Makaton is a complete language programme using speech, signs, and symbols.)

The manual aims to meet the needs of  any practitioner working with either one or a group of children. It is therefore written for parents, carers, teachers, and other professionals alike. An additional twenty story books complete the scheme. The reading scheme is available for purchase at:

Level of Session 
Age Group 
Topic of interest to people who use AAC
Primary school