PECS – Picture Exchange Communication System

PECS is a unique alternative/augmentative communication system developed in the USA in 1985 by Andy Bondy, PhD, and Lori Frost, MS, CCC-SLP. PECS was first implemented with pre-school students diagnosed with autism at the Delaware Autism Program. Since then, PECS has successfully been implemented worldwide with thousands of learners of all ages who have various cognitive, physical and communication challenges.

PECS consists of six phases and begins by teaching an individual to give a single picture of a desired item or action to a “communicative partner” who immediately honors the exchange as a request. The system goes on to teach discrimination of pictures and how to put them together in sentences. In the more advanced phases, individuals are taught to use modifiers, answer questions and comment.

PECS Phase 1


PHASE I – How to Communicate
Individuals learn to exchange single pictures for items or activities they really want.

PECS Phase 2


PHASE II – Distance and Persistence
Still using single pictures, individuals learn to generalise this new skill by using it in different places, with different people and across distances. They are also taught to be more persistent communicators.


PHASE III – Picture DiscriminationPECS Phase 3
Individuals learn to select from two or more pictures to ask for their favorite things. These are placed in a PECS Communication Book—a ringed binder with self-adhesive hook fastener strips where pictures are stored and easily removed for communication.

PECS Phase 4


PHASE IV – Sentence Structure
individuals learn to construct simple sentences on a detachable Sentence Strip using an “I want” picture followed by a picture of the item being requested.



Individuals learn to expand their sentences by adding adjectives, verbs and prepositions.

PHASE V – Responsive RequestingPECS Phase 5
Individuals learn to use PECS to answer questions such as “What do you want?”


PECS Phase 6

PHASE VI – Commenting
Individuals are taught to comment in response to questions such as, “What do you see?”, “What do you hear?” and “What is it?” They learn to make up sentences starting with “I see”, “I hear”, “I feel”, “It is a”, etc.



So what has this got to do with VELCRO?

The pictures in the above phases, need to be easily attached and removed from the communication books or boards. That’s where Velcro comes in. The Velcro supplied needs to be of the highest standard as it is getting used repetitively on a daily basis. At Mailcraft we supply VELCRO® Brand Stick on tape, and as we are the ONLY Premium Distributor for Velcro in Ireland we can offer schools and PECS training consultants the most competitive prices in the country.  Please contact us for more information or call us on 0429756696.








History of Velcro, Velcro Hook and Loop, Velcro Coins

In summer 1948, a Swiss based amateur-mountaineer and inventor George De Mestral took his dog for a walk. De Mestral and his dog both returned home covered with burrs, the plant seed-sacs that cling to animal fur in order to travel to fertile new planting grounds. De Mestral was very curious and decided to run his microscope and inspect one of the many burrs that stuck to his pants. De Mestral witnessed all the small hooks that enabled the seed-bearing burr clinged so viciously to the tiny loops in the fabric of his pants and knew he was onto something special. De Mestral  decided right then, to design a new innovation, that consisted of two-sided fastener, where one side would be with stiff hooks like the burrs, with the other side being soft hoops similar to the fabric of his pants. He decided to call the innovation VELCRO® BRAND, as it was combination of the word velour and crochet. De Mestral now had innovation he believed could take on the world renowned zipper, and would be just as effective in its ability to fasten.

De Mestral’s initially found his innovation was me with resistance but he prevailed by sticking by his product. After meeting a weaver who worked in textile plant in France, he managed to perfect his innovation the hook and look fastener. Funnily, he perfected the hook and look fastener by accident, after he realized than nylon when it was sewed under infrared light, enabled the tough hooks for the burr side of the fastener. After finishing the design of the hook and loop fastener, De Mestral had the product patented by 1955, just seven years after that walk with his dog. Now VELCRO® BRAND is a multi million euro industry, and is popular throughout industries all over the world.

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