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Coffee Session with Guest Speakers Sophie Thwaites and Emma Thompson

May 6, 2021 @ 10:00 am - 12:00 pm

  • Coffee Session with Guest Speakers Sophie Thwaites, specialist Occupational Therapist and Emma Thompson, Makaton Tutor

Thursday 6th May from 10.00-12.00 noon


Sophie Thwaites, specialist Occupational Therapist

Sophie Thwaites is a specialist Occupational Therapist. She typically works with children aged between 8-12 years old, who are struggling to read, write, sit still and coordinate their body. She helps to find the source of their challenges and permanently reduce them; ultimately allowing them to unlock their potential, enjoy learning, and grow in confidence.

Sophie will be discussing how the first few years of life play a vital role in building a strong foundation for further development. Exploring what primitive reflexes are, how they can impact a child’s learning and coordination, and how we can create long lasting solutions through specific movement programmes.

Emma Thompson, Makaton Tutor

I would like to introduce myself, I am a parent in the East Riding and as part of our journey we began using Makaton with our child.

I know East Riding do not use Makaton per se and I would like to explore this with you as the benefit of Makaton is that all signs are standardised across the UK, meaning the signs children learn are consistent and symbols are all the same. This makes communication so much easier.

As our journey with Makaton continues, I have recently qualified as a Makaton tutor and am interested in exploring opportunities to work with the Parent Carer Forum. I know from my time in Portage in East Riding there is little in the way of Makaton support for families locally and this has spurred me onto help plug this gap.

I have created my own business and am now able to support families and professionals with access to Makaton training. I am hoping this maybe something that the Parent Carer Forum can help highlight to families who may find this service useful. I can also provide Makaton training to any teams to ensure they are fully able to support children across the county who have communication difficulties.

I am currently exploring the ideas of hosting a monthly Makaton support group targeting parents and other Makaton users (TA’s, portage staff) for free, I am thinking this would be an online session that enables people to share their experiences of Makaton and in which I can provide some revision or support around a chosen topic each month. I am interested to explore whether there is demand for a Support Group.

Feel free to have a look at my website to see the courses and services I can offer as standard, I am open to exploring new ideas as well.


To access the Coffee Sessions via zoom

Register here or contact Claire Thomas, 07813 676941



May 6, 2021
10:00 am - 12:00 pm


Via Zoom
East Riding Voluntary Action Services - ERVAS