Early Years Settings
As children learn to play and explore in Early Years environments, symbols can be used to support their developing vocabulary through the use of symbol cards, labelling and Widgit Early Learning software. Having the symbols generally around means that individuals who have not understood a particular instruction or opportunity can still see what is expected.
Staff working in Early Years settings and Children’s Centres use symbols to label the environment to make it accessible to pre-school children not able to read, for example indicating where the children may have a drink, look at a book or take part in an activity.
Symbols are also used to help children to explain and communicate by choosing the relevant symbol, for example symbolised cards to answer the question, ‘How are you feeling today?’
Symbols are also used to support behaviour management. Staff make booklets to model the right choices such as playing together, sharing toys and being kind, while discouraging antisocial behaviour such as being angry and hitting. Popular characters such as Ben 10 and Lightning McQueen are incorporated to personalise the booklets for individuals.