The Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS) was developed 20 years ago by Andy Bondy and Lori Frost to help young children with autism communicate. It is now being used successfully with older children and adults with communication difficulties.

In the early stages, the student learns to initiate communication by giving a single picture to an adult in exchange for something they really want, such as an item of food or a toy. Over time the student chooses from an increasing number of pictures or symbols to receive different items, and stores the pictures in a communication book. The student progresses from using single pictures to joining them together and so learns to construct sentences to communicate with others.

It has been reported that both pre-school and older students have begun to develop speech when using PECS. The system has been successful with adolescents and adults who have a wide array of communicative, cognitive and physical difficulties.

If you would like to learn more about PECS visit www.pecs.org.uk

Please email any comments or enquiries to info@pyramideducationaltrust.org

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