Meet Our Short Course Co-ordinator, Emily Nott
I started my week not at my usual desk, but in a room overlooking snowy Regent’s Park, on the fifth floor of the Royal Institute of British Architects. For three days last week this venue was home to 14 speech and language practitioners participating in our ‘Hanen: Learning Language and Loving It’ course. It was my responsibility to welcome them, check that training materials had arrived and technical equipment was working, and that everyone had a cup of tea before getting back to the office.
Setting up courses is one of the best parts of my job – not just because of the fantastic views – but because it’s nice to finally meet the people I’ve been sending emails and talking to on the phone to help them book their places and organise a successful training event. People who come on I CAN short courses come from all over the country, and bring with them a diverse range of professional experiences – which means that I get to have some really interesting conversations before the training starts.
The short course programme has been a key part of I CAN’s valuable work for a number of years, and in the last few months as I CAN’s Short Course Co-ordinator, I’ve quickly come to see how important it is. The current programme features training courses aimed at a variety of practitioners working with a range of age-groups, from children’s centre staff to secondary school teachers, teaching assistants and speech therapists. What you can expect to learn on each one will be different, but the aim is always to equip people working with children all over the UK with the knowledge and resources they need to make a difference to the lives of those with speech, language and communication needs (SLCN).
The other side of my job involves looking at feedback from some of our training courses, so I get to see how helpful people find them, and the responses are overwhelmingly positive. I’m always reading about how much delegates value the expertise of I CAN’s advisors, and how useful the resources will be in the classroom. What practitioners often find most helpful is the opportunity to meet and discuss with each other, share ideas and experiences and make new contacts.
Until this year, all of I CAN’s short courses have taken place in London, but in the next month we’re running our first one in North Yorkshire. On the 18th and 19th of March, I CAN advisors are offering ‘Nuffield Early Language Intervention’ Licensed Tutor Training in Northallerton’s County Hall – which makes our training even more accessible to practitioners who are based further away from London. All this is helping I CAN’s valuable work reach more and more children every day, and is something I’m really excited to be involved in.