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Family Pages: Multisensory Impairment (MSI)


For a lot of the children we support, we will be advising that their communication is developed using tactile information such as hand under hand signing or on-body cues as their sense of touch is crucial in helping them to compensate for their visual and hearing difficulties. We will work alongside your child’s Speech and Language Therapist to develop individualised communication plans. If you would like to learn a little more, we advise that you read resources only developed by specialists of MSI. We have included some below to help you;

*the term Deafblind may often be used alongside Multisensory Impairment and is the same meaning to describe someone who has difficulties with their hearing and their vision – it does not mean that a child has no hearing or no vision at all.


For a child with MSI, story time needs to allow for multisensory experiences to ensure that they can access the magic of stories with their family. The SISS MSI team have prepared the following guide;

We have also prepared a guide for the story ‘Pig in the Pond’ – prepare to get very wet! Please follow this link for more details;

The Pig in the Pond by Jill Barton and Martin Waddell

We have developed a useful guide that we hope will support you in understanding ways to support your child’s communication;

Useful Organisations

  • (support for children and adults with multisensory impairment)
  • (provide loans of sensory toys/ loans of specialist equipment)

Music Ideas

  • (a musical organisation developing inclusive music projects across the UK)
  • The BBC have put together some great video full of sensory music ideas;

Body Awareness / Sensory Development

We have developed this guide to support your child’s use of touch as this is such an important part of their sensory development. You can view it here…

Advice for hospital / clinic visits and resources for specific conditions

  • Learning to See (a useful document if your MSI teacher has talked to you about possible visual processing difficulties)

Watch this space – more to follow soon…