Squirrel Story’ is a narrative re-telling task that yields a descriptive profile of a child’s development of key narrative competencies. It was designed by Judith Carey, speech and language therapist. Judith designed our nursery and reception narrative packs. The hard copy version of the assessment has been available since 2006.
The test is based on the Peter and the Cat Narrative Assessment designed by speech and language pathologists, Leanne Allan and Suze Leitão in collaboration with the teachers and principal of a Language Development Centre in Western Australia following more than seven years of development and testing.
It provides a profile around 6 key areas of narrative in young children. Quick to administer, easy to score.
Although the tool’s primary use is with children who have language delay and disorders, the assessment can be used for children with a variety of language needs whether the primary deficit is due to disorder, delay or language deprivation.
The ‘Squirrel Story’ is not norm referenced, however guideline scores are presented from a sample of 100 children, these are included in the App Manual.
The assessment is also a useful tool to determine therapy goals and/or curriculum planning.
This established assessment is used by therapists, teachers and researchers across the world and is recommended in the recent influential publication, ‘Developing language and literacy: effective intervention in the early years’, Julia M. Carroll et al, 2011.
The iPad version of the assessment uses the same profiling of language skills as the original but brings together an illustrated ebook with voice overs, audio recording, on screen profiling, dictation facility (new iPad only), automatic report generation, iCloud, Dropbox and email connections, enabling an assessment to be made quickly and efficiently with less preparation time.
The final report, together with the audio recording of the child’s re-tell, can be transferred to a desktop computer via email or Dropbox. The report is in plain text so it can easily be incorporated into other reports or case files.
The iPad version has new illustrations by the children's illustrator Mike Phillips, who also illustrated the Peter and the Cat Narrative Assessment for 5-9 year old children.
The voice-overs for the story can be selected from UK, US, and Australian speakers.
Issues of confidentiality have been taken into account by password protecting data.
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