November 27, 2015

Sound Start Study visit to NSW Department of Education Rural and Distance Education Unit

Dr Yvonne Wren from the Bristol Speech and Language Therapy Research Unit and University of Bristol visited the NSW Department of Education Rural and Distance Education Unit on Thursday 26th November. She demonstrated the Phoneme Factory software designed for teachers and assistants to support children with speech sound difficulties. Phoneme Factory consists of two programs:
1.     Phoneme Factory Phonology Screener provides teachers with a tool to individually assess children’s production of speech sounds and to determine if they need additional support (e.g., intervention using the Sound Sorter software, or further assessment and intervention by a speech pathologist)
2.     Phoneme Factory Sound Sorter provides games for children to play to support their speech and phonological awareness skills. The software enables teachers to individualise activities to a child’s particular needs.

The Phoneme Factory software was developed in the UK by Dr Wren and Professor Roulstone. The Phoneme Factory Sound Sorter has been adapted for the Australian context with support from the Rural and Distance Education Unit. It has been trialled in public and private preschools in NSW over the past 3 years in the Sound Start Study in association with researchers from Charles Sturt University (Professor Sharynne McLeod, A/Prof Jane McCormack, Dr Kate Crowe, Sarah Masso) and The University of Sydney (Dr Elise Baker).
Mike Tom, Kym Knight, David McLeod, Greg Alchin, and Yvonne Wren