Resources for schools (Selective Mutism)

The following resources have been developed for Essex schools by professionals who are contributors to the Selective Mutism Special Interest Group.

An introduction to Selective Mutism for Essex primary schools – a recorded webinar (26:23 mins) which develops learners’ …

  • awareness of the presenting features of Selective Mutism and the associated barriers to learning
  • understanding of the significance of early intervention with the condition
  • knowledge of key assessment tools and supporting strategies

Selective Mutism – Using the Graduated Approach

Selective Mutism Good Practice Guidelines

Basic information on Selective Mutism

Communication Rating Scale for pupils with selective mutism – to help them to express how they feel in different communication situations

What’s working and not working? – a feelings scale which helps adults learn about how children with communication difficulties feel about their learning and the school environment. This could be used as part of the One Planning process for a child/young person with selective mutism.

What’s important to me? Symbols or photos are used instead of words for children/young people with selective mutism to identify their likes and dislikes by placing on a ‘talking mat’. This provides a visual record of the child/young person’s views, with a photograph of the completed mat kept as a record of the interaction. This could be used as the One Planning process for a child/young person with selective mutism.

Speaking habits – a form to analyse the people with whom a child/young person will speak, and the different locations in which this occurs

First Transitions – a guide to supporting the first transition into an education setting. Although relevant to all children, the guide is focused on anticipating the needs of children who may be pre-disposed to anxiety or Selective Mutism. A guide for school staff to consider when planning home visits for a new intake of children.

Transition Checklist for students with selective mutism – a list of recommended actions during Year 6 to support the transition of a pupil with selective mutism to secondary school

Quick Guide to Selective Mutism for Secondary School staffa single sheet summarising ways to support young people with selective mutism, to circulate to all secondary school staff (including site staff)

Environment Checklist for anxious/reluctant communicators (School) – a checklist for school staff to identify and eliminate possible causes of anxiety, and to determine what is working and what is not working for the pupil (to be used in conjunction with the Home Environment Checklist)

Developing Communication Confidence – Planning a programme for reluctant talkers/children with Selective Mutism

The Stages of Confident Talkinga resource, adapted from The Selective Mutism Resource Manual, that enables staff to identify a child’s baseline, drawing upon their observations and information gathered through person centred tools

Observation of children with anxiety/reluctant talkers – a form for practitioners to record time, situation/context, body language, non-verbal communication, spoken language and other information, which may be affecting a child in the school environment

What will the Specialist Teacher do? – a simple information sheet (words and pictures) to explain to a child with selective mutism what to expect if a Specialist Teacher becomes involved.

If you have any resources to share with the group, please email:

EssexSelective.MutismSpecialInterestGroup@essex.gov.uk