A support group for families with children who have Down's Syndrome in Monmouthshire, the Forest of Dean and surrounding areas. Registered Charity No. 1142198

Date: Friday, 6 May 2016

Venue: Llanover Village Hall, Llanover, NP7 9HB

This workshop will be delivered by The Whole Child Therapy Group based in London and is an introduction to sensory processing and how these issues impact on a child. This is a dynamic workshop that discusses and explores the experiences for a child with sensory processing difficulties. Providing insight into signs of sensory difficulties and beginning the discussion of providing a supportive environment at school.

This workshop is aimed at parents, carers, teachers, support staff and clinicians who are looking to understand how sensory processing disorders can effect so many of the children they know and work with.

Those attending the workshop will gain insight into how issues around sensory processing can make everyday functions difficult for children and start to explore ways to reduce the impact of these difficulties.

Learning outcomes:

  • To understand sensory processing and the impact on daily life
  • To understand the impact of sensory processing difficulties on learning
  • To provide a sensory lens to behaviour and engagement

Timetable for the day:

10:00 – Arrival and Registration

10:15 – Session 1

11:00 – Break

11:20 – Session 2

12:45 – Lunch

13:30 – Session 3

15:00 – Break

15:20 – Session 4 and Questions

17:00 – Finish

Workshop charge to professionals: £40

Charge to family members of children with Down’s syndrome: £10

Numicon Training Workshops

Monday, 18 January 2016 – Foundation and KS1

Tuesday, 19 January 2016 – KS2 onwards

9.00am – 3.00pm (Registration 9 – 9.30am)

Venue – K:04, K Block, Coleg Gwent, Usk Campus, Usk, NP15 1XJ

What is Numicon?
Numicon is a multi-sensory maths teaching programme using Numicon maths shapes in a series of practical teaching activities. The Maths Shapes give learners insight into number values and relationships in a way not provided by written numerals. Learners develop their own mental imagery as they combine and compare the shapes to do arithmetic in a series of practical activities.

Numicon’s visual, auditory and kinaesthetic approach appeals to different learning styles. Pupils learn through both seeing and feeling how Numicon patterns connect with each other. By physically manipulating Numicon to build constructions, make arrangements and patterns and play games using the feely bag, pupils will experience with both their hands and their eyes how numbers fit together. The powerful images can also open doors for children struggling with number, no matter how old they are.

Participants will actively work with Numicon during the workshops.

School teaching staff/professionals: £40 per person
Parents: £10 per person

Morning refreshments & lunch will be provided

Numbers are limited so please book as soon as possible to secure your place.

If you wish to book a place please contact Nicky Williams on 07824 612 364 or nickyxwilliams21plus@gmail.com

In conjunction with The Attik, 21 Plus friends and volunteers will be abseiling down St. Mary’s in Monmouth to raise funds on Saturday 17th October.

If you’d like to donate or participate, please visit our MyDonate page.


It’s this time of the year again!

We’re holding our annual fundraiser: a Ceilidh and Hog Roast on Saturday, 20 June 2015 from 5 to 9 pm at Dingestow Village Hall near Monmouth.

Please come along, bring your friends and family and join us for this fun evening for the whole family.


Workshop on Tuesday, 16 June 2015

Llanover Village Hall, Llanover, near Abergavenny, NP7 9HB

9.30 – 11.30 Early years up to Key Stage 1

12.30 – 2.30 Key Stage 2 onwards

Course Outline
This training session will support parents and support staff to discuss issues around behaviour and explore strategies that will help them to promote positive behaviour in a child with Down’s syndrome. The session will adopt themes around communication and approaches to managing behaviour that will ensure consistency and a sense of stability for a child.
The course will be informal, using a variety of teaching methods. The course facilitator will also bring a variety of additional learning resources that provide further reading for those with a particular interest.
Participants will be encouraged to draw upon their own experiences and will have the opportunity to raise questions as they arise.

Course Content
1. The learning profile of a child with Down’s syndrome – learning strengths and learning weaknesses and how these affect behaviour
2. Language development and communication and impact on a behaviour management strategy
3. Developing independence and age appropriate behaviour
4. Encouraging friendships
5. Sources of additional support

Course Facilitator
Julian Hallett – Down’s Syndrome Association Wales Manager

Course Cost: £5

Please contact Katharina Barker by email: 21plus.k.barker@gmail.com to book your place.

Meeting the communication challenges of teenage years and young adulthood

for professionals and families supporting children and young people with Down syndrome from age 9 to young adulthood

Wednesday, 3 December 2014
9.30 am to 4pm
at The Serennu Children’s Centre, Newport, NP10 9LY

Led by: Leela Baksi, Specialist Speech and Language Therapist, Symbol UK Ltd

Cost: £50 per professional (30 places available) and £20 per family member (16 places available).

If your child is moving towards puberty or is grappling with issues of adolescence and adulthood, and meeting communication challenges along the way, then this course is for you.
This course looks at the communication issues in the context of adolescence, a time of transition from childhood to adulthood. We will explore ideas and strategies that can support communication around key themes for teenagers and young adults, focusing on the strengths and challenges associated with Down syndrome.
We discuss developing skills for the teenage years and young adulthood, focusing on the nuts and bolts of speech, language and communication to build success in real life situations.

This course is designed for a mixed audience of parents and family members, Personal Assistants and befrienders, school and college staff including teaching assistants and teachers, and other practitioners including speech and language therapists. There will be opportunities to discuss issues and plans for individuals during workshop-style sessions.

Course outline:

Adolescence, young people who have Down syndrome, and communication skills: challenges and opportunities – What does research tell us about the communication skills of young people who have DS?

Living with communication impairment: common issues and what we can do about them
■ Key areas to address and strategies: learning words and achieving clearer speech; vocabulary, language scripts, grammar and narrative skills; personal presentation skills;
■ Too much/not enough talking! Self-talk, and selective mutism – why might it happen and what we can do about it.

Visual scaffolding to support thinking skills, and organisational skills and communication

Communication strategies for exploring issues of adolescence with young people who have Down syndrome
■ Who am I? Developing identity as a young person
■ What’s happening to me? Changing bodies and changing relationships
■ Taking a place in the adult world – Citizenship

To book a place, please email: victoria.21plus@gmail.com. Alternatively, contact Victoria on 07813877957 to discuss your booking.

When booking places, please provide:
• Your name and contact details
• Names and roles of people applying for places
• Age(s) of young people who have Down Syndrome that you support
• Name and address for invoicing. An invoice will be sent as confirmation of booking.

Symbol UK Ltd provides a range of services to people with learning disabilities including specialist speech and language therapy for people with Down syndrome, and have worked with the Down’s Syndrome Association as speech and language therapy advisors, Down Syndrome Education Trust, parent lead groups and schools, colleges and NHS services. See their website http://www.symboluk.co.uk for further details about what they offer.


Serennu Children’s Centre
Cwrt Camlas
High Cross
NP10 9LY
Tel: 01633 748000

There is a free car park at the venue.

Inclusion of Children with Down’s Syndrome
Chepstow Racecourse
Chepstow, Monmouthshire NP16 6BE
Thursday, 2 October 2014

From 8.30 Enrolment and Coffee

9.00 Including children with Down’s Syndrome – An introduction to the learning profile and whole school planning:
Victoria Ralfs – Schools Advisory Service Lead, Ups and Downs Southwest

10.00 Coffee

10.30 Developing Literacy – Looking at language and communication and the development of reading and writing skills: Cecilie MacKinnon – Downsability

12.00 Lunch

12.45 Developing Numeracy Skills in Primary School – Using Numicon to develop concepts and mathematical thinking:
Cecilie MacKinnon
Promoting Age Appropriate Behaviour in Secondary School: Victoria Ralfs

13.45 Break

14.00 Developing Maths Skills in Secondary School – Developing mathematical skills for everyday living: Cecilie MacKinnon
Behaviour Management in Primary Schools: Victoria Ralfs

15.00 The Importance of Inclusion: Victoria Ralfs

15.30 Evaluation and Close

Please contact 21plus.k.barker@gmail.com for further details and a booking form.