Why multimodal communication isn’t optional

by Adina Levy

First up, let’s get clear on what multimodal communication is:

Multimodal communication is when you combine different modes of communication. That might include speech, visuals, gestures, writing, sign language, facial expressions, objects, high-tech AAC and more.

When you combine any of these forms of communication, you’re using multimodal communication, which is fabulous!

Supporting, modelling, using, and teaching multimodal communication with and to Autistic kids is not optional. It’s helpful for everyone, and essential for Autistic children.

And I share why in this episode of the Exploring Neurodiversity podcast (listen to the 10 minute episode!).

Here are my top 5 reasons why multimodal communication is essential for autistic children:

1. We all use multimodal communication

2. It is a human right to be able to access communication in different modes

3. Speech or mouth words can be hard for many reasons. And it’s not the ultimate or ‘best’ way of communicating

4. The most important thing about communication is that it can lead to connection. Not HOW the communication is done

5. Many autistic children have processing challenges and sensory challenges which can lead to varying communication abilities. Multimodal communication offers a range of ways to take on and share messages to accommodate for fluctuating needs

If you’re a Speech Therapist, and you’d like to know more about HOW to support multimodal communication for Autistic Kids,  check out my course ‘Affirming Communication for Autistic Children

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