PECS Information

Picture Exchange Communication System
by Pyramid Educational Consultants

This is a quick rundown of the first two phases of PECS. This is by no means a "training," rather than a guide to give you an idea of what should be happening. To be proficient with the program, you must be officially trained by a PECS trainer (usually a two-day training).

PECS Phase I Example
Phase I is all about teaching the individual about requesting. The initial phase is teaching that when you exchange a picture (token), then you get something in return (reward). This takes a lot of repetitions throughout the day in all environments. The big key is to remove all verbal directives. Using physical prompts by a communication helper is essential. This takes a lot of practice on both the helper and the communication partner's behalf. 
  • Do give physical prompts.
  • Don't say, "Pick up the picture and hand it to me."
  • It's all about giving the power to the individual to communicate.

PECS Phase II Example
This phase is all about increasing distance between the communication partners and putting more power into the individual's hands to intently request a desired item.
  • Physical prompting only. 
  • Remember--no verbal directives like, "Pick up the picture. Now take it over to _________. Good job." 
  • It's all about being behind the individual and giving physical prompts when needed.