Understanding Learning Disabilities. 

Pavilion, £175, ISBN: 1841961248 Phone: 01273
623222 e-mail:

This video-based training resource for trainers and managers to
use with their staff is very thorough, yet concise and easy to use,
writes Matt Dore. It’s aimed at people who are starting work with
people who have learning difficulties. However, it can be used to
refresh and refocus groups of staff where unsound values or lack of
training have caused bad practice.

The pack covers seven areas which will help the staff team to
understand aspects of learning difficulties: attention; perception;
time perception; short-term memory; comprehension; expression and
coping with change.

Although presented from a predominately health perspective, it does
pick out the positive aspects from the social model of disability.
This is to be found in the written material, as the video focuses
heavily on the medical model.

There is a lot of written information for the trainer to go
through, which means they have to allow plenty of preparation time.
The video presentations are short, so need to be shown as a whole,
as well as in the planned sections. It would have been more
authentic if actors with learning difficulties were involved.

With links to NVQ and learning disability awards framework, this
training pack would be very useful for all learning difficulties
organisations wishing to improve on their quality of service.

Matt Dore is a manager of a supported living service for people
with learning difficulties.

Exploring the Depths: A resource manual for those wishing
to develop peer education

Four stars

Russell House Publishing. ISBN 1903855438,

This resource, published in partnership with Fast
, a charity that promotes positive lifestyles for young
people, answers many questions about peer education issues, such as
what it is, when to use it, how best to manage it, and whether it
really works, writes Caroline Morris. While there is plenty of
guidance to get you started, or report on what has been done in
specific situations elsewhere, this is a comprehensive resource

It provides definitions, case studies, activities and good practice
examples to take you through all the steps involved in starting,
developing, completing and reviewing a peer education scheme.

It also offers practical ways to save time by including Fast
Forward’s own training activities, policies, guidelines and
procedures, developed over the years, for adaptation and use.

Caroline Morris is a regional training and development

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