We are the Makaton Champions from Marine Academy Primary in Plymouth.
We would love to introduce ourselves to you and tell you all about the
outstanding Makaton we do across the school.
In every class there is a selected Makaton Champion pupil. We have
weekly meetings (which are invite only) where we discuss and come up
with ideas of how we can improve the use of Makaton.
The Makaton Champions wear Makaton badges with pride, so other
children can easily recognise who the Makaton Champions are. They are
great role models who are superb at Makaton and want to help and learn
more about Makaton.
Recently, the Makaton Champions came up with the idea of Makaton
Mailboxes: a small box decorated with appropriate Makaton signs.
Each class has one. If a student or a member of staff would like to
know a certain Makaton sign, they can write down the word they want to
learn and post it in the Makaton Mailbox. Then in our weekly meetings,
the children collect the mailboxes and learn what has been asked. Then
they teach their friends the Makaton sign.
We have a designated Makaton Board for all staff, external agencies,
parents and children to see. The board is filled with information about
the Makaton Charity, the Makaton Champions, and useful website links
that could be of use. The Makaton Board is updated weekly with the Sign of the Week
(which is sent our electronically to all teachers too). Children learn
the Sign of the Week and try to use it independently with their learning
or when communicating to other adults and children. We read the Makaton
Monthly newsletters and send them to the teachers to read too.
In the past we have held Makaton workshops for parents and carers and have had the two-day Makaton Foundation Workshop for staff members to support their CPD.
Throughout our school we have Makaton symbols on the doors and the
cupboards to support the visual image of the meaning of object.
Currently, we are learning lots of Makaton signs to complement our
Christmas performances. When practising the songs in class, the Makaton
Champion helps the teacher by demonstrating and teaching the signs.
When we have whole school rehearsals, the Makaton Champions stand at
the front of the hall and performances the songs with the Makaton
actions. Teachers get PDF documents of the signs they need to complement
We are very lucky to have Widgit's InPrint3
which our Inclusion Team use to make personalised resources with
appropriate Makaton signs and symbols to support a child's learning,
transitions or communication.
In the future we are hosting a Dudes Club, where dads can spend time
with their children for one afternoon and take part in a variety of fun
activities. One of the activities is going to be a ‘Makaton sing off’ of
Christmas songs between the children and their parents.
We try our hardest to post our Makaton learning on Facebook and
Twitter so please do have a look @MarineAcademyPlymouth (Facebook) and