Will my pupils benefit? I have a range of abilities in my class.
TACPAC is now a familiar sight and sound in most schools and settings where there is a sensory curriculum. Pupils may be autistic, have missing chromosomes, have global developmental delay, speech and language difficulties, attention and listening difficulties making it difficult for them to focus on aural messages, or be very wary of anyone coming close, or touching. Over time, all these pupils benefit from Tacpac.
The Teacher Benefits
Teachers report that pupils benefit from the consistent structure of the half hour session, and the continuation of that, over a significant period of time, up to 5 months per set. The sessions can be timetabled to be held at the same time in the same place, assisting the predictability of the communication.
Touch and Music in Equal Measure
Tacpac uses the senses of touch and music in equal measure. We have objects of reference, signs or sounds of reference to indicate that it is Tacpac time. The classroom has a sign on the door saying “ Tacpac Time – do not disturb “ which helps minimise interruptions and further stimulae. Staff teams work together on the same pupil each week, building a relationship over time which the pupil learns to trust and relax into, thereby helping non verbal or verbal communication. The thematic material lends itself to sensory story telling, allowing the pupils to feel and experience the story in sequence. More able pupils can give to less able pupils, creating bonds of friendship which have lasted well past the length of a session.
From Primary to Secondary
Pupils who have had Tacpac through their primary school, have taken it into their secondary school, where it has been a calming and familiar activity for both them and their giver. Staff trainings are available to help promote the profile of Tacpac throughout the school, and to help increase staff awareness of sensory alignment.
Tacpac can be recorded on p scales, b square, Early Years Foundation Stage, or whichever assessment tool you’re using. In the words of a teacher from Shepherds Down School in Winchester, “It’s a winner!”
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